Instagram launches new tools to limit bullying and spread kindness

Paawan Sunam
Oct 09, 2018 14:21 IST

There is no place for bullying on Instagram. If people see that kind of hurtful behavior on the platform, they can report it, and remove any content that violates Instagram's guidelines.

"But online bullying is complex, and we know we have more work to do to further limit bullying and spread kindness on Instagram," Instagram said in an official blog by Adam Mosseri, Head of Instagram. Instagram announced latest tools to help combat bullying, including a new way to identify and report bullying in photos. The platform is 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," the statement added.

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. Instagram will be 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 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 the 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, Instagram introduced a bullying comment filter to proactively detect and hide bullying comments from Feed, Explore, and Profile. Instagram is 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.

Also Read: Testing: Continuous Instagram Stories for splitting videos longer than 15 seconds!

Kindness Camera Effect

Together with New York Times best-selling teen author, dancer, and actor, Maddie Ziegler, Instagram is 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 the 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 the platform.

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