Instagram launches features to combat abuse and hate speech

Instagram features

Instagram working on features that filter abusive messages in user’s DM and protect users from unwanted contact.

Instagram recently shared an update on their features to combat abuse and hate speech on Instagram, which includes penalties for people who send abusive Direct Messages (DMs). Now, Instagram is even announcing a new way to protect people from seeing abusive DMs in the first place, as well as the ability to prevent someone you’ve blocked from contacting you from a new account.

A new feature to filter abusive messages

Instagram features

Instagram is working on a new tool that is designed to help protect the users from potentially offensive or abusive DM requests, while also respecting their privacy. All message filtering will take place on the user’s device, which means this tool won’t send any message content back to Instagram servers. This new tool when turned on will automatically filter DM requests containing offensive words, phrases, and emojis, so the user never has to see them.

This tool will work in a similar way to the comment filters that Instagram already offer, which allow you to hide offensive comments and choose what terms you don’t want people to use in comments under your posts. After introduction of this tool, you can turn both comment and DM request filters on and off in a new dedicated section of your Privacy Settings called Hidden Words.

Also Read: Child Safety groups urge Facebook to abandon plans of launching Instagram for kids

Instagram has worked with anti-discrimination and anti-bullying organizations to develop a predefined list of offensive terms that will be filtered from DM requests when the feature is turned on. All DM requests that contain these offensive words, phrases, or emojis – whether from user’s custom list or the predefined list will be automatically filtered into a separate hidden requests folder. 

A new way to protect you from unwanted contact

Instagram features

Instagram is also introducing a new feature that makes it harder for someone who the user has already blocked from contacting them again through a new account. With this feature, whenever one decides to block someone on Instagram, the person will have the option to both block their account and preemptively block new accounts that person may create. This will be available globally in the next few weeks.


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