Say goodbye to trolls: New Instagram feature stops people posting offensive comments

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Trolling has been a problem for a while now but it appears Instagram has come up with a solution.

They have launched a “keyword moderation tool” that blocks certain words. You can create your own list of “keywords” or you can use those offered by Instagram.

Launching the tool means that if any of the chosen words are posted on your photo, the posting will become invisible to you and other users and will only appear to the commenter.

The beauty of the Instagram community is the diversity of its members,” said Kevin Systrom, chief executive and co-founder of Instagram, in a blog post.

When Mike and I first created Instagram, we wanted it to be a welcoming community where people could share their lives. Images have the ability to inspire and bring out the best in us, whether they are funny, sad or beautiful. Over the past five years, I've watched in wonder as this community has grown to 500 million, with stories from every corner of the world. With this growth, we want to work diligently to maintain what has kept Instagram positive and safe, especially in the comments on your photos and videos. The beauty of the Instagram community is the diversity of its members. All different types of people — from diverse backgrounds, races, genders, sexual orientations, abilities and more — call Instagram home, but sometimes the comments on their posts can be unkind. To empower each individual, we need to promote a culture where everyone feels safe to be themselves without criticism or harassment. It's not only my personal wish to do this, I believe it's also our responsibility as a company. So, today, we're taking the next step to ensure Instagram remains a positive place to express yourself. The first feature we’re introducing is a keyword moderation tool that anyone can use. Now, when you tap the gear icon on your profile, you'll find a new Comments tool. This feature lets you list words you consider offensive or inappropriate. Comments with these words will be hidden from your posts. You can choose your own list of words or use default words we've provided. This is in addition to the tools we've already developed such as swiping to delete comments, reporting inappropriate comments and blocking accounts. We know tools aren't the only solution for this complex problem, but together, we can work towards keeping Instagram a safe place for self-expression. My commitment to you is that we will keep building features that safeguard the community and maintain what makes Instagram a positive and creative place for everyone.

A photo posted by Kevin Systrom (@kevin) on

“All different types of people – from diverse backgrounds, races, genders, sexual orientations, abilities and more – call Instagram home, but sometimes the comments on their posts can be unkind.

“To empower each individual, we need to promote a culture where everyone feels safe to be themselves without criticism or harassment.

“It’s not only my personal wish to do this, I believe it’s also our responsibility as a company. So, today, we’re taking the next step to ensure Instagram remains a positive place to express yourself.”

To use the tool you should carry out the following steps:

  • Go to your Profile and tap the Options menu (gear icon).
  • Click “Comments”.
  • Select “Hide Inappropriate Comments,” which will hide any comments using Instagram’s standard list of keywords.
  • You can also add custom keywords you’d like to filter out. Any comments containing these keywords will be hidden.

This feature will hide violating comments on old and new posts alike.

If you turn the comment filter off, or remove custom keywords, any comments containing those keywords will be unhidden.

The keyword tool is not infallible and should be used along with other tools to protect users from abuse.

However Systrom explained: “We know tools aren’t the only solution for this complex problem, but together, we can work towards keeping Instagram a safe place for self-expression,”

“My commitment to you is that we will keep building features that safeguard the community and maintain what makes Instagram a positive and creative place for everyone.”

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