Tech Overlook

New Tools to Limit Bullying and Spread Kindness on Instagram – Instagram


There is no place for bullying on Instagram. If people see that kind of hurtful behavior on our platform, they can report it, and we remove any content that violates our guidelines. But online bullying is complex, and we know we have more work to do to further limit bullying and spread kindness on Instagram. That’s why today we’re announcing our latest tools to help combat bullying, including a new way to identify and report bullying in photos. We’re also introducing a camera effect to help spread kindness in Stories. As the new Head of Instagram, I’m proud to build on our commitment to making Instagram a kind and safe community for everyone.

Detecting Bullying in Photos

While the majority of photos shared on Instagram are positive and bring people joy, occasionally a photo is shared that is unkind or unwelcome. We are now using machine learning technology to proactively detect bullying in photos and their captions and send them to our Community Operations team to review.

This change will help us identify and remove significantly more bullying — and it’s a crucial next step since many people who experience or observe bullying don’t report it. It will also help us protect our youngest community members since teens experience higher rates of bullying online than others. This new technology has begun to roll out and will continue to in the coming weeks.

Bullying Comment Filter on Live Videos

A few months ago, we introduced a bullying comment filter to proactively detect and hide bullying comments from Feed, Explore and Profile. We’re now adding this filter to comments on live videos to ensure that Live remains a safe and fun place to authentically connect with your friends and interests. This is now globally available for all live videos.

Kindness Camera Effect

While stopping bullies is important, we must also do more to celebrate and inspire kindness on Instagram. Together with New York Times best-selling teen author, dancer and actor, Maddie Ziegler, we’re launching a kindness camera effect to spread positivity. Maddie has been speaking out against online bullying since she started experiencing it and is one of many people in our community that uses Instagram to promote positivity.

If you follow Maddie, you will have the camera effect automatically. Swipe to open the camera, tap the face icon at the bottom and choose the new camera effect. In selfie mode, hearts will fill the screen — and you’ll be encouraged to tag a friend you want to support. Your friend will receive a notification that you mentioned them in your story. They can share it to their own story or use the camera effect to spread kindness to someone else. If you switch to the rear camera, you’ll see an overlay of kind comments in many languages. If you aren’t a follower of Maddie but you see someone else with the effect, tap “try it” to add it to your camera. Learn more about our camera effects here.

In honor of National Bullying Prevention Month in the US, the upcoming Anti-Bullying Week in the UK and anti-bullying efforts around the world, we are pleased to announce these new ways to combat bullying on our platform. To learn more about today’s updates, visit wellbeing.instagram.com and the Instagram Help Center. And to review our newly launched resources for parents, visit parents.instagram.com

There’s more work to do, and we will continue to do our part to protect the community so that you can safely be yourself on Instagram.

Adam Mosseri
Head of Instagram
@Mosseri

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