Viral Instagram Account Claims Platform Suppresses BLM Content

New Zealand-based news platform Shit You Should Care About is calling out Instagram for possibly shadowbanning their BLM content.

After a grand jury made the devastating decision Wednesday to not charge the two Louisville police officers who shot and killed Breonna Taylor during a botched “no-warrant” raid of her apartment in March— and instead indict a former Louisville police detective for endangering Breonna Taylor’s neighbors with his shots that missed— social media has erupted in uproar, @shityoushouldcareabout included.

With over 1.8 million followers on Instagram alone, the viral brand now suspects they have been shadowbanned for sharing content related to Black Lives Matter and Breonna Taylor’s death.

“Oop! I reckon we’ve been a little shadowbanned,” they shared on IG stories early this morning. “Maybe turn on post notifs to make sure ya don’t miss anything?! WTF IG?”

The account then tested this theory with a grid post of Harry Styles donning a t-shirt with the words, ‘Women are smarter.’ In the caption, admins asked followers to drop heart emoji in the comments if the Harry Styles snap showed up on their feed.

Shortly after, they posted the same photo of the Watermelon Sugar singer with a photoshopped phrase on his t-shirt which reads, ‘KEEP GOING FOR BREONNA.’

Again, they asked followers to engage with the the post if they saw it on their feed.

At the time of publication, the outlet’s original Harry Styles post has over 158K likes and 6.9K+ comments. The edited version which includes Breonna Taylor’s name has only 72K likes and 4.9K comments.

“Yo! Looks like they allow Harry Styles content, just not the news or BLM content,” Shit You Should Care About wrote on Instagram. “How are supposed to change the WORLD WITHOUT BEING ABLE TO POST ABOUT THINGS WITH SUBSTANCE (no offence harry we love u).”

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This is not the first time Instagram and its parent company Facebook have been accused of suppressing BLM content and encouraging fake news. Just last week, celebrities like Kim Kardashian West and Selena Gomez called out the tech giant for spreading hate, misinformation, racism, and bigotry ahead of the US election. Algorithmic racial bias has also come into question as of late, with multiple platforms including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Reddit, being accused of favouring white faces over BIPOC.

The backlash runs in line with the #StopHateforProfit campaign, which prompted both global companies and celebrities to leave Instagram for 24 hours and pause all ads and sponsored content to bring attention to the damaging and often incorrect messaging being spread on social media in the lead up to the election. 

Backed by Anti-Defamation LeagueNAACP, Sleeping Giants, Common Sense, Free Press and Color of Change, the campaign first launched in July 2020 and calls for a more thorough and credible fact checking process, increased moderation and tangible change in blocking misleading political advertisements across Facebook and it’s subsidiaries.

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