Recently, Instagram has announced that the social media app will be restricting some of the content dealing with diet products and cosmetic surgery. Instagram is taking action after there has been a large amount of criticism regarding the negative impact promoted posts for dietary supplements, products and cosmetic surgeries have had. A younger demographic especially, has been at risk of poor mental health and body image based on this type of content.
Under new regulations, advertisement posts that feature products to help with weight-loss or feature a cosmetic procedure will be hidden from users under the age of 18. Also, posts that make a commercial offer to users while claiming to be a “miraculous” way to lose weight will be removed from the app.
Instagram’s public policy manager claimed: “we’ve sought guidance from external experts, including Dr. Ysabel Gerrard in the UK, to make sure any steps to restrict and remove this content will have a positive impact on our community of over 1 billion people around the world – whilst ensuring Instagram remains a platform for expression and discussion.”
The social media app wants to sustain a positive environment especially for younger demographics using it. They hope that these restrictions will reduce the amount of body and beauty pressure that society faces.
Within the next few weeks, Instagram will try out a feature where users can report posts that they find goes against these new policies. After Instagram reviews the content it will be appropriately handled.
Actress Jameela Jamil has been working with Instagram in the past year to make this change happen. Jamil expressed her happiness in a recent Instagram post stating that “this is an extraordinary win that is going to make a big difference.”
Jamil hopes that this initiative will hold influencers more accountable for the sponsored content they promote to their followers. She has been quick to criticize celebrities such as Cardi B and the Kardashians for promoting detox tea to their following. Jamil even created her own body-positive platform on Instagram, I Weigh, which has started a movement and boasts more than 855,000 followers.
With these new social media changes, apps such as Instagram can hope for more positivity on their platform especially with the help of body positive content.