Instagram has been cracking down on various tactics people use to try to get ahead of the others on the platform. They’ve killed off many of the third party services that tip-toed the TOS line. Pods are pretty much a thing of the past. And they’ve implemented “shadowbanning”. A shadowban is essentially a post-specific ban that you don’t know about. Instagram kills your reach without you knowing (except for the fact that nobody engages with your stuff anymore).
An online tool was released last year which showed some promise, although it seems to have been abandoned. Individual URLs still work, but checking whole accounts never seems to have been completed. Now, though, there’s a new Instagram Shadowban Test from Triberr that checks the last 10 images you upload at once.
As the shadowban is post-specific and not attached to your account as a whole, it’s a great way to quickly scan your last few posts to check that everything’s ok. And it’s much more useful than the old tool which only let you check one image at a time by copy+pasting specific URLs. With the new one, you just enter in your username, and it comes up with a list. Checking my own Instagram account with images from the recent Photography Show, I can see that my last 10 posts are just fine.
What shows if you are shadowbanned I’m not sure, as I’ve been a good boy on Instagram. That being said, there is a legend to what various hashtags in your post mean depending on how they’re displayed. This will help to give you some idea of why your post is getting shadowbanned to prevent you from doing it again.
Triberr offers some tips on what to do if your posts get shadowbanned, too.
- Delete hashtags from the shadowbanned post(s). Avoid the use of too many hashtags, repetitive hashtag sets, or banned hashtags.
- Correct any post images or captions, or remove anything that can be perceived as spam or flagged by others.
- Disconnect third party apps that may have resulted in the shadowban, especially bots or automation software that violate Instagram’s terms of service.
- Report your shadowban to Instagram if you believe your account has been inadvertently impacted.
- Refrain from any Instagram activity for the next 2 – 3 days. This includes posting, commenting, and liking. Just take a break and go outside!
That last one’s kind of scary. Go outside? Really? But there are people out there!
Ultimately, whether your posts get shadowbanned is up to you. But the first step to not getting shadowbanned is knowing how and why you’re getting shadowbanned in the first place.
This tool will help you to do that.