Facebook Bans Groups Used to Boost Instagram Reach

By Kehl Bayern / May 19, 2018

As part of a broader effort on the part of Facebook to crack down on groups and users that may be abusing its system, the social media service announced it was banning ten major groups used to boost the reach of Instagram accounts.

People would use these groups to attempt to “game” the system so to speak on Instagram and increase their following in the process.

Peta Pixel cites a report from BuzzFeed that this action came in the wake of the news agency’s contacting Instagram and inquiring about the potential impact these groups could be having on the algorithm used to determine a photo’s reach on Instagram.

One major group that was deleted reportedly had 200,000 members.

Image via Kaboompics.com from Pexels.

Names such as Instagram Followers Exchange, Daily Instagram Engagement, and Instagram Like and Comment give you some idea of the scope of these groups’ activities.

For those that may not be aware, attempting to artificially inflate likes, comments, or followers can lead to Instagram banning your account. The idea behind all of this is, of course, that the service wants growth and engagement to be organic and based on relevance.

As Peta Pixel reports, most of these groups grew in response to Instagram’s switch from a chronological feed to an algorithm-driven relevance system.

Basically, these Instagram “pods” would like, comment, and follow one another en masse in order to make the service think the photo was very popular.

Many of these groups were rapidly growing and probably only represent a fraction of the total groups out there dedicated to this practice.

Instagram has cracked down on a lot of the automated systems users had grown to love over the past few months, such as an automated response bot and other bots. Some users got their account banned for such activity, perhaps the strongest response Instagram can mete out for real power users.


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About the author

Kehl Bayern

Kehl Bayern is our staff news writer and has over a decade of experience in online media and publishing. In terms of photography, he is interested in architecture and modern design. Kehl Bayern is also the author of science fiction thriller Animus Proxy. He is based in Boston, Massachusetts and studied politics at the University of Virginia and, later, Harvard University for graduate school. He spends much of his time traveling up and down the east coast of the United States. You can follow him on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

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