Instagram Users Under 18 Will Soon Be Blocked From Seeing Posts Promoting Certain Cosmetic Surgery And Diet Products
A spokesperson for Instagram said that it's about reducing the pressure that people can sometimes feel using social media.
Instagram on Wednesday announced a new policy that would restrict, and in some cases remove, content that promotes weight loss products or cosmetic procedures.
The policy is being led by Instagram, but will impact content on Facebook as well. Users who are known to be under the age of 18 will be restricted from viewing posts that promote the use of certain weight loss products and cosmetic procedures, or posts that have an incentive for users to buy products or include a price.
Instagram's public policy manager, Emma Collins, said in a statement on Wednesday that the changes were aimed at dealing with the growing industry of influencer marketing on the platform.
"We want Instagram to be a positive place for everyone that uses it and this policy is part of our ongoing work to reduce the pressure that people can sometimes feel as a result of social media," Collins said.
The company plans to introduce new tools in the coming weeks that will allow users to report a post within the app if they believe it violates the new policy.
This initiative coming out of Instagram's UK team isn't an accident. The announcement also included comments from British Good Place actor Jameela Jamil.
"We are changing the world together. After a bunch of shouting, screaming, and petitioning... we have managed to get the attention of the people at the top, and they have heard us and want to protect us," Jamil wrote on her own Instagram Wednesday. "And this is just the beginning of our efforts."
Jamil has been a huge advocate for stricter content regulations on Instagram regarding body image for several years now. In 2018, Jamil started the "I Weigh" campaign on Instagram in response to an offensive meme targeting the weights of the Kardashian/Jenner clan. Then several months later, Jamil called out rapper Cardi B, who’d posted a sponsored Instagram for a brand of detox tea.
Jamil went on to publicly slam celebrities like Iggy Azalea, Khloé Kardashian, and Perez Hilton for their promotion of detox teas.
The Kardashians, in particular, have been at the center of the growing backlash against celebrity-sponsored weight loss products advertised on Instagram. In an interview with the British Evening Standard newspaper, Collins mentioned how the new policy would work.
"If [a Kardashian’s] Instagram post is pulled into the policy of promoting diet products or procedures for sale it will be removed," Collins said. "The Kardashians are people we continue to have collaborative conversations with, they’ll be made aware of the change."
As of Wednesday afternoon, it appears the policy is already affecting certain posts.