Instagram introduces 'shadow ban' to curb cyberbullying

Instagram introduces
Highlights

Instagram is using AI technology to detect abusive comments and bullying on the platform.

Facebook-owned Instagram has introduced a unique feature to control online bullying, where a user can "shadow ban" or "restrict" a bully from commenting on her/his posts. To detect bullying and other types of harmful content in comments, photos and videos, Instagram is using Artificial Intelligence (AI). The AI will automatically alert members while they upload an abusive comment.

Instagram Restrict feature will hide comments from a bully without notifying the specific person. "Restricted" people won't be able to see when you're online on Instagram or when you've read their direct messages. You also have a choice to make a restricted person's comments visible to others by approving their comments.

Adam Mosseri, Head of Instagram, announced on Monday, "It's our responsibility to create a safe environment on Instagram. We 've heard from young people in our community that they're reluctant to block, unfollow, or report their bully because it could escalate the situation, especially if they interact with their bully in real life."

"We wanted to create a feature that allows people to control their Instagram experience, without notifying someone who may be targeting them. We have started rolling out a new feature powered by AI that notifies people when their comment may be considered offensive before it's posted," informed Mosseri.

This feature gives people a chance to reflect and undo their comment and stops the recipient from receiving the harmful comment notification.

"From early tests of this feature, we have found that it encourages some people to undo their comment and share something less hurtful once they have had a chance to reflect," said Instagram head.

"We can do more to prevent bullying from happening on Instagram, and we can do more to empower the targets of bullying to stand up for themselves," he further added.

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