Instagram bullies to be told to rethink abusive comments before posting

Posted July 10, 2019

You can also choose to "unrestrict" individual comments from these users, so they show up to everyone, but the rest of their comments will still be restricted.

Instagram will now give you a comment warning if you post something offensive.

One of social media's most popular photo-album sites is rolling out new ways it will be combating online bullying. So, Instagram has now added two new features, one AI-based and the other relies on users themselves.

The platform is also introducing a new "Restrict" feature that's aimed at helping people who are being bullied or targeted with hate. When you use this feature on a user, only they will be able to see their comments after they post them and they will have no idea that other people aren't seeing them.

Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri posted about the upcoming changes on the company's blog.

Instagram hopes its two new features will prevent bullying in the first place as well as provide tools to those who are being bullied.

Kevin Systrom, Instagram's former chief executive, told The Wall Street Journal in September 2018 that he became concerned with bullying when he was thinking of having children of his own. "From early tests of this feature, we have found that it encourages some people to undo their comment and share something less hurtful once they have had a chance to reflect".

"We've heard from young people in our community that they're reluctant to block, unfollow, or report their bully because it could escalate the situation", Mosseri said in a statement. "Some of these actions also make it hard for a target to keep track of their bully's behaviour".

"Soon, we will begin testing a new way to protect your account from unwanted interactions called Restrict".

This update has been rolled out in the past few days, and will essentially prompt a user if their comment is flagged as inappropriate-this gives the perpetrator the chance to reconsider their actions, although Instagram only reveals that only "some" people have actually re-worded their comment after being notified. Moreover, Restricted users will not be able to see if you've read their messages, or whether you're online on the platform.