Instagram "actively promotes" accounts encouraging teen eating disorders

Originally published at: Instagram "actively promotes" accounts encouraging teen eating disorders | Boing Boing


The Zuck is bad for your health, color me surprised.


Remember when we thought Lore was Soong’s worst progeny?


I’ve been enjoying this read this morning:

In all seriousness, lots of folks have said that these sorts of maneuvers like promoting harmful instagram accounts smell of the desperation of a tech company that knows they are sliding towards irrelevance.

I for one cannot wait until FB and its other properties become the next MySpace.


Your lips to Dogs ears…


I hate Zuckworld, but sadly it is the only place to stay in the loop with some of my relatives.


If anything the last 20 years of media has told me that humans love comparing ourselves to others in a multitude of self destructive ways. Maybe like 1% of reality TV was actually positive and beneficial to everyone involved. The rest is toxic in some way. Even going back to something like America’s Funniest Videos it was the audience laughing at people getting hurt. Now with the rise of “influencers” what teenager doesn’t want to be that person they see on their screen getting to go on exotic vacations, drive expensive cars, and have millions of “followers”. So not really surprised when Instagram pushes toxic pages to vulnerable groups.


I’ve fallen hard off FB in the past 6 years or so. Part was that I’m uninterested in installing their apps, but (on devices) Messenger is a pain to use unless you switch to desktop mode in a browser. Part was the nonstop stream of ads salted into the stream; ads that get weirder and stalkier (right now it’s memes that are more cruel than funny). Part was the instability of the stream; I’d read some replies and the whole thing would reset to the top again, or would actually say I’ve reached the end (impossible when I’m only checking once a month!). And part is my lack of time to trawl through all of the inconveniences for the very few friends who are sticking to the platform. There’s so much chaff I hardly see their posts. Add in FB’s tendency to rearrange the deck chairs/security/settings, and it’s just an annoying place to avoid.


I keep hearing this line over and over in regards to FB. What did people do before FB to keep up with family? IDK Write? Call? Visit? Birthday Parties? Weddings? Funerals? Vacations? There are multitudes of ways to keep up with family WITHOUT FB.

Never been on FB and keep up with family just fine.


Forced face-to-face on random holidays and a call on their birthday. Plus the family coconut telegraph of rumors and shit. The only upside to FB there is that you get some generally realistic idea of what they’re up to, and some vacation photos that you don’t have to sit through for an hour.


and admitted that it should not have done so.

Sure, when they were caught. I don’t know how much more evidence is needed that this company is toxic and run by sociopaths.

Same here. If we have to have social media, I’d rather it be on healthier FOSS federated platforms like Mastadon rather than in walled gardens controlled by dead-eyed greedpigs.


Well, I can’t speak for anyone but myself, but I hardly keep in touch with anyone even on Facebook.
What I do use Facebook for, almost exclusively, is messenger. Since my sister emigrated to Germany, we’ve been calling each other everyday. Phone calls got expensive pretty fast, so I helped her register on Facebook and we’ve been chatting happily since.
Also for the 3 people I still bother to talk to, messenger is more convenient than SMS.
But I’m hardly representative of anyone else, since I actively try to keep my friend count in the dozens. Preferably dozen.

Edit: Here’s a tip for anyone still using facebook: Use the restricted list for people you want to unfriend but can’t for whatever reason, like coworkers. It excludes them from seeing what you post to friends and it hides them from your feed. 2/3 of my friends are in the restricted list.
You can still contact them on messenger in case you need something.


From the ongoing discussion on Cap Hill today via CNN

"Sen. Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat from Minnesota, asked former Facebook employee Frances Haugen if the company is using its algorithm to push “outrageous content” promoting eating disorders to young girls.

She said that Facebook “knows it is leading young users” to content related to eating disorders.

“Facebook knows engagement-based ranking, the way they pick the content in Instagram for young users, for all users, amplifies preferences…They’ve done something called a proactive incident response where they take things that they heard, for example, can you be led by the algorithms to anorexia content and they have literally recreated this experiment and confirmed yes, this happens to people,” she said "

Like Nazi doctors they are.


“The kids who are bullied on Instagram, the bullying follows them home. It follows them into their bedrooms. The last thing they see before they go to bed at night is someone being cruel to them. Or the first thing in the morning is someone being cruel to them. Kids are learning that their own friends, people who they care about, are cruel to them,” she said.

This could potentially impact their domestic relationships as they grow older, Haugen added."

Toxic as snorting ground up catalytic convertor dust.


We can hope, but they’re more profitable and have more active users than ever at this point (nearly 3 billion). With WhatsApp they’re the defacto way to communicate in some countries… there are more WhatsApp users in India than there are people in the US.

Even if the momentum slows or stops, it will take them much longer to disappear than MySpace, which at its peak only had 100 million users.

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The problem is, if a critical mass of one’s contacts are exclusively using platform X to communicate, then opting out of platform X has a large social cost. In my case, the family is spread out across multiple time zones and not everyone can afford to travel further than driving distance for in person stuff, so opportunities to see each other are limited at the best of times. I took a few years off from using FB and, despite my best efforts, I missed out on a lot.

I have been working as the family nerd to shift our conversations to Zoom and group messaging, but it is an ongoing process. Paradoxically, I also had to spend an excruciating amount of time on FB over the last 18 mo or so actively pestering my friends and family to follow safe practices during the pandemic.

I envy your ability to keep up with your family w/o FB, but what would you do if that was their mode of engagement?


Exactly this:


I’m sick and tired of this dumb trope.

I’d go on but I now see @Akimbo_NOT sort of beat me to it (though mine would have been a longer and more righteous rant.) :wink:

But see also the penultimate paragraph of my earlier post elsewhere.


Try any one of a number of other messaging and communication platforms. Some of them are even just as free - which probably also means they are problematic in some way, but they are readily available.


Thank you for your feedback.

Sarcastic Emma Stone GIF

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