The minute we apply the intersections of race, disability and sexuality, censorship seems to increase and it gets harder and harder to exist on Instagram. Algorithms are key to content moderation. They are supposed to inform and protect us but, sadly, we know that hasn’t always worked in recent years (see the dissemination of fake news or far-right
content online). For some time, there has been a feeling that Facebook policies
(Facebook, of course, owns Instagram) which are intended to "remove and reduce" problematic content are actually doing more harm to marginalised groups. Sometimes this comes in the form of censorship – like that which I have experienced – and sometimes it comes in the form of "shadow banning"
. This is where images are not explicitly deleted from the platform but, instead, are hidden from users by the algorithm and never shown on Instagram’s explore page. In short, the platform has begun to feel actively biased against the accounts of women and, in particular, women who aren’t white, as well as plus-size, trans and queer accounts.