Instagram expanded a ban on content related to self-harm and suicide to include fictional drawings and memes containing graphic imagery, as part of an ongoing effort to protect vulnerable users.
The social media platform will also remove imagery which may not directly show self-harm or suicide but includes “associated materials or methods”. Accounts showing content related to self-harm will not be recommended by Instagram’s search and discovery tools.
Instagram chief Adam Mosseri said in a blog the move is part of an ongoing effort to “strike the difficult balance between allowing people to share their mental health experiences while also protecting others from being exposed to potentially harmful content”.
The decision builds on a move made in February to prohibit graphic non-fiction images of self-harm and limit the visibility of other images, for example those of healed scars, in its search tab.
Mosseri said as a result of the change, Instagram was able to act on twice as much content as before, removing or limiting the reach of more than 834,000 posts in the three months following the shift.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back