Instagram's bullying, stalking, and harassment crisis


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One gets the impression that harassment wasn’t something Instagram’s designers considered, or hired professionals qualified to help them consider. And that design oversight is biting them and all their users in the butt.

On the other hand, such rank incompetence in design made it a perfect acquisition fit for Facebook.


“We’re fighting bullying with a Positivity Filter!”

“Can I report people for being bullies and harassers?”

“Nope lololol!”

I generally prefer Instagram to the other major social media platforms, but none of them seem to do a very good job of really stomping out the creeps.


I’m self congratulating, again, that I never went anywheres near Instagram


I don’t share photos with people who are going to hate on me. Problem solved.


All social media including old fashioned bulletin boards and modern forums are prone to bullying and anti-social behaviour, always have been. You have to fight it with human moderation which not only stamps on transgressions but also encourages positive behaviour by influencing.

In smaller, genuine common interest arenas you can find people to do this kind of community building well for free, because they have a personal stake in the outcomes.

The problem for the big boys is no-one is going to help them police their forums for free, so they need to hire a lot of expensive moderators to do it. They don’t really want to spend the money.


And not just the salary for the mods. Also the cost of the therapy needed after viewing the really horrifying stuff.


I too was under the impression that Instagram was a better place to be. I’m not a user myself, but podcasters and other social-media-dependent personalities seemed to express this occasionally. Since it appears their moderation and design are no different from Twitter or Facebook, I wonder if (if there is any truth in these idle impressions) this difference is totally down to user behavior on Instagram. Perhaps people curate their lists more carefully, because the service is secondary, and are saving their “blast to the wide-open world” behavior for Twitter and Facebook, or just the fact that it’s focused exclusively on photos make people just a smidge more careful about curation of their contact lists.


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