Instagram is adding new resources for users affected by negative body image or eating disorders. Starting this Monday, if users search for eating disorder-related content on Instagram, the app will point them to helpful expert-backed resources. Instagram will also offer users contacts for local eating disorders hotlines in the US, Canada, Australia, and the UK.
Like most other social media platforms, Instagram also doesn't allow content that promotes or encourages self-harm and eating disorders. The Facebook-owned photo-sharing platform already tries to "blur potentially triggering images" in search results. It also directs users who search for such content to crisis support resources.
Now, following the newly introduced measures, users will see helpful resources specifically designed around eating disorders. Users can tap on the blue "Get Resources" button to get help from experts or a friend. Instagram also offers ways to support yourself. These are the suggestions that have helped other users in the past. The "See Results" button, meanwhile, will allow users to continue with their search.
These resources will also appear if someone tries to share such sensitive content on the platform. Moreover, "if a friend is concerned about something they see posted and wants to offer support," they can also direct the user to these resources.
Facebook says it is working on making it easier to connect with friends over Instagram in such situations. It plans to add the ability to send a message to a friend directly from the resources. This feature will be available in the coming weeks.
Instagram introduces new ways to support users suffering from
Instagram is also expanding its work with experts to better inform the users of its policies, so they can offer support to users suffering from. It is also hosting feedback sessions with experts from all around the world to learn more about such issues. The company hopes to be able to introduce new approaches for offering support through these measures.
Additionally, Instagram is working with NEDA (National Eating Disorders Association) to share programming during National Eating Disorders Awareness Week in the US. It is collaborating with community leaders to help them create and share positive, inspiring body image content. Several community leaders will be sharing Reels to encourage positive body image, the company says.
Several other platforms like Pinterest, Tumblr, and TikTok also have similar measures in place to try and help people who make potentially triggering or dangerous searches on their platforms.