Meta-owned, Instagram has now started hiding followers for private accounts based in Russia and Ukraine, the most recent response by the social app to the ongoing invasion of Ukraine by Russian troops. In a corporate blog post on Tuesday, Instagram parent company Meta declared it was “hiding information about people’s followers, who they’re following, and people who are following each other for private accounts based in these two countries.”
Instagram is Now Downranking Posts from Russian State-Affiliated Media
In addition to hiding followers for private accounts in Russia and Ukraine, the photo-sharing app also confirmed the launch of labels people will see when sharing links to Russian state media and that Instagram was downranking such media in its main feed and Stories tray. Furthermore, media under the command of the Russian government isn’t being suggested in Instagram’s Explore section or in Reels, its TikTok competitor.
Moreover, the Russian government has already blocked access to Instagram’s sister app, Facebook, along with a slew of western media outlets, in an effort to control what Russian citizens see about its bloody invasion of Ukraine. Facebook was recently blocked in Russia for legislating the same enforcement against Russian state media, so Instagram is risking being blocked by the government as well after starting to hide followers for private accounts along with other actions.
Meta Makes Encrypted DMs Available in Russia and Ukraine
Instagram has quite more users in Russia than Facebook, according to third-party estimates, while WhatsApp is the most used messaging app in the country. Meta has also announced that it would make encrypted DMs available to all adult users in Russia and Ukraine and make it easy for accounts in those countries to bulk delete content and activity.
Source: The Verge