Instagram wants to stop bullying in DMs with new anti-harassment tools
When it’s not working on a dedicated platform for kids, Instagram works hard on suppressing bullying on its regular platform most of us use. With its new set of tools, Instagram wants to make it easier to get rid of abusive DMs. in fact, you’ll now be able to block someone from harassing you even from a new account they create.
Filtering abusive direct messages
“Combatting abuse is a complex challenge and there isn’t one single step we can take to eliminate it completely, Instagram writes. “Because DMs are private conversations, we don’t proactively look for hate speech or bullying the same way we do elsewhere on Instagram.”
Because of this, Instagram has included a new feature that you can enable in order to filter out potentially abusive DMs. When you turn it on, it will automatically filter DM requests containing offensive words, phrases, and emojis. This way, you never have to see them.
Instagram notes that the tool focuses on DM requests because this is where you’re most likely to receive abusive messages. The messages you get in your regular DM inbox are usually from your friends, people you follow, or whose requests you’ve already approved. So, Instagram believes that the chance of bullying is significantly smaller in the regular inbox.
The new feature works similarly to the comment filters Instagram already has: you get to hide any terms you don’t want people to use in messages. You can turn both comment and DM request filters on and off in a new dedicated section of your Privacy Settings called Hidden Words.
Protecting yourself from unwanted contact
One of many nasty things about bullies is that they will create a new account to bully you again once you block them. Sadly, I know this from experience. Well, Instagram wants to make it harder for these psychos to reach out to you from any new account they open in the future. Rolling out in the following weeks, the new feature will let you both block someone’s existing account and any new accounts that they may create.
I support any attempt to combat bullying and any kind of abuse, in person or online. It’s not something you can deal with overnight, but it’s important that we work on anti-bullying features, but more importantly – education. And if Instagram persists with the “Instagram for kids” project, I sure hope that they will work on both of these aspects. Although, I hope that they’ll drop it, but that’s another topic.
[via Yahoo News]
Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.