Instagram Cracking Down on NSFW Photos: Service Now Hides Them from Explore and Hashtags

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It looks like Instagram is following in Tumblr’s footsteps with a crackdown on explicit content on the platform.

The Facebook division just announced a new policy with regard to NSFW photos on the service and they’re basically burying them from search and explore features.

photo by charles deluvio
Photo by Charles Deluvio

So, they’re not totally getting rid of smut like Tumblr, they’re just making it harder to find.

As you can imagine, this change has not gone over well with the Internet. But does anything?

Sadly, though, Instagram’s newfound puritanism doesn’t just extend to explicit photos but also those that are sexually suggestive as well. This means you don’t need to have nudity to watch your Instagram metrics go down the drain.

PetaPixel probably gives one of the best lists of the ambiguous guidelines that Instagram has provided as part of its new Community Guidelines. Photos that are “violent, graphic, shocking, lewd, hurtful, spam, misleading, or in bad taste” could find themselves with a significantly hobbled reach on the world’s most popular photo forum.

To help them police their content, Instagram is relying upon both AI-based algorithms and human moderators to help decide in borderline cases.

While the separation of photos into “Recommendable” and “Non-Recommendable” is sad given the heretofore relatively open policy Instagram has had, at least the company isn’t getting rid of all of that content entirely.

All of this is part of Facebook’s push to make Instagram another major pillar of advertising revenue.

“As content gets closer and closer to the line of our Community Standards at which point we’d remove it, it actually gets more and more engagement. It’s not something unique to Facebook but inherent in human nature,” said Facebook’s Henry Silverman.

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Kehl is our staff photography news writer and has over a decade of experience in online media and publishing and you can get to know him better here

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