Instagram Activates Default 'Explore' Filter Targeting 'Sexually Suggestive' Posts

Instagram Activates Default 'Explore' Filter Targeting 'Sexually Suggestive' Posts

MENLO PARK, Calif. — Instagram announced on Tuesday the launch of a feature called “Sensitive Content Control” and set, as a default for all users, an option that prevents the app's “Explore” feature from showing posts that the company’s algorithms and human moderators deem “sexually suggestive or violent.”

The three new options that users can now select are “Allowed” (less censored), “Limit” (censored) and “Limit Even More” (even more censored). But in order to select “Allowed,” Instagram users are now being forced to navigate through several steps to disable the default filter setting.

A statement from Instagram — a Facebook company — introducing the feature claimed the company believes “people should be able to shape Instagram into the experience that they want,” which seems contradictory given that “Limit” was included as the default option for all users.

According to the company’s statement, "Sensitive Content Control" allows the user to decide how much "sensitive content" shows up in "Explore."

The company reasserted that its controversial corporate censorship policies, which include a blanket ban on “the female nipple” — selectively not applied to celebrities and some people shown breastfeeding — are meant “to keep people safe.”

“We don’t allow hate speech, bullying and other content that might present a risk of harm to people,” the company stated.

“We also have rules about what kind of content we show you in places like ‘Explore,’” the statement continued. “We call these our Recommendation Guidelines. These guidelines were designed to help ensure that we don’t show you sensitive content from accounts you don’t follow. You can think of sensitive content as posts that don’t necessarily break our rules, but could potentially be upsetting to some people — such as posts that may be sexually suggestive or violent.”

The Sensitive Content Control feature further solidifies the corporate stance by Instagram and Facebook that all “sexually suggestive” material is in the same category as “harmful” and “violent” content.

The instructions to opt out of Instagram’s new default content censorship involve several steps and are allowed only for users over 18 years of age. First, users should go into their profile, tap the "Settings" menu and then tap "Account." Under "Sensitive Content Control," choose "Allow."

As many users pointed out on social media, the default censorship of content appeared to discriminate against posts concerning sexual health, LGBTQ+ information and non-sexual posts by individuals and accounts that might have been flagged as “sexual” and thus subject to the company’s notorious (and notoriously secretive) shadowbanning protocols.

Progressive, feminist sexual health company Bellesa was one of many accounts to release a tutorial on how to override the app’s new default censorship feature.

“Instagram? Censoring sex-related content? Groundbreaking,” noted the Bellesa account.

Copyright © 2024 Adnet Media. All Rights Reserved. XBIZ is a trademark of Adnet Media.
Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission is prohibited.

More News

Adult Site Broker Talk's Bruce Friedman Reflects on Podcast Success

The 200th episode of Adult Site Broker Talk will air next week, with 2023 XBIZ Performer of the Year Cherie DeVille as a very special guest.

FSC Asks Supreme Court to Overturn 5th Circuit Decision, Strike Texas' Age Verification Law

Free Speech Coalition (FSC) filed a petition for certiorari on Friday asking the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn the Fifth Circuit panel decision that partially upheld Texas’ controversial age verification law.

Details Emerge About Capture, Arrest of GirlsDoPorn's Michael Pratt

Further details have emerged in the past week about the capture and arrest of GirlsDoPorn owner Michael Pratt in Spain in December 2022, following his extradition to the U.S. last month.

Magdalene St. Michaels, Andy Rodrigues Named as AEBN Top Stars for Q1 of 2024

AEBN has announced its top-selling stars for the first quarter of 2024, with Magdalene St. Michaels landing atop the leader board for straight theaters and Andy Rodrigues heading up the gay rankings.

YouPay Partners With IP Security Solution Sidenty

Australian gifting platform YouPay has joined forces with IP security solution Sidenty to help creators guard against online theft and unauthorized use of their content.

Grooby Launches Fetish Site 'Joey's Trans Feet Girls'

Grooby has debuted Joey's Trans Feet Girls, a new fetish membership site featuring foot content by top trans performers.

Lady Lyne Launches New Paysite Through AdultPrime

IMC’s AdultPrime has expanded its network of paysites with the launch performer Lady Lyne's official site.

UK Media Regulator Encourages Companies, Creators to Provide Feedback on 'Categorized Services'

U.K. media regulator Ofcom is again asking adult industry companies, creators and other stakeholders to provide feedback to help it establish new regulations under the Online Safety Act (OSA) — regulations that will impact the accessibility of online adult content.

Internet Researcher Maggie MacDonald Pens Op-Ed on the Risks of Canada's Age Verification Proposals

Online safety academic and Ethical Capital Partners’ advisory board member Maggie MacDonald penned an editorial for the Toronto Globe and Mail arguing that although mandatory age-verification for adult content will not work to prevent online harms for minors, it will erode everyone’s privacy instead.

LoyalFans to Hold 'Master Class' Event With Ezada Sinn

LoyalFans will hold a special "Master Class" livestream with content creator Ezada Sinn, titled "Growing Your LoyalFans Account & Creating Passive Income," on Saturday at 2 p.m. EDT.

Show More