Instagram is taking a step further to foster a safe and inclusive platform as the company updates its Sensitive Content Control feature. Recently, the social media giant added the "body weight control" option to the list of subjects that allows users to remove weight loss-related content and advertisements from their feeds.
The update comes as an extension to the tool’s guidelines. “In addition to Explore, you will now be able to control the amount of sensitive content and accounts you see in Search, Reels, Accounts You Might Follow, Hashtag Pages and In-Feed Recommendations,” the company explained in a recent statement.
There is a lot of danger that lies beneath weight-loss content that promotes negative body image. Other social media platforms have also taken a stand against this toxic culture in recent years. For example, Pinterest banned all ads that discuss rapid weight loss, reference BMI or side-by-side body comparisons.
Body-neutral influencer Katie Budenberg also fronted the demand for Instagram to improve the feature’s guidelines. Prior to the update, Budenberg launched a petition to include weight-loss and diet ads in the list of topic preferences. In the description, she writes, "These ads may be harmless and they can scroll on, but for some, these ads are triggering and dangerous." The petition received over 30,000 signatures.
And while it’s still unclear if Instagram’s latest update is the result of the petition or a move made to follow other platforms, the change is still welcomed by many. It’s a great start to ending a culture that promotes negative body image, but there’s still plenty of work left to be done.
To implement this change on your Instagram account, you can follow the steps here.