Instagram has tightened its stance on hate speech in direct messages, as the company announced today that it is starting to disable the accounts of people who send such messages frequently.
First-time violators will not be able to send messages for an indefinite period of time, but if they send hate messages again, their account will be disabled.
The podium said in PostWe also disable new accounts created to circumvent our messaging restrictions, and we continue to disable accounts that we found were created only to send offensive messages.
Instagram’s hate speech policy prohibits attacks on people based on protected characteristics, including race or religion, as well as more implicit forms of hate speech, such as content depicting black faces and anti-Semitic mentions.
Instagram says: We are also committed to cooperating with UK law enforcement authorities on hate speech and responding to valid legal requests for information in these cases, and as we do with all requests from law enforcement, we reject it if it is too broad or inconsistent with human rights. Or not legally valid.
This update of hate speech stems from a situation in the UK where soccer stars have been targeted with racist abuse via Instagram after losing a match.
Prince William, Duke of Cambridge who is also president of the Football Association of England, issued A statement Last month he said: Racist abuse – whether on the stadium, in the stands or on social media – is despicable and must stop now.
Four football clubs also issued a statement against the abuse, and the mayor of Greater Manchester urged social networks to step up assistance in curbing them.
This action update can discourage people from sending a hate message, but it will also only work if Instagram can continue to quickly disable accounts as they arise.
The platform said: We want Instagram to be a place for people to connect with the people and things they love, but we also know that, just like in the real world, there will always be those who offend others, and we saw that recently with online racist abuse targeting Footballers in the UK, and we don’t want this behavior on Instagram.
She added: The abuse that we see a lot in people’s private messages is more difficult to address than comments via Instagram, and given that direct messages are for private conversations, we do not use technology to proactively discover content, such as: hate speech or bullying, in the way The same that we do elsewhere.
Instagram is constantly improving its detection tools, and between July and September of last year, it took action on 6.5 million hate speech across the platform, including private messages, and found 95 percent of it before anyone reported it.