You've probably looked at Instagram's sponsored content and just assumed it was a necessary evil. After all, it's easy enough to scroll past ads to get to pics of your pals' pups and those photos from your cousins' vacation to Bali. And hey, sometimes those ads look great. Who hasn't gotten tricked by a glam ad from a fashion brand and "accidentally" double-tapped? Put a cute pair of Chelsea boots in front of me, and I'll double tap without checking to see who posted it.
But we're letting you in on a little secret: What if we told you there is a way to banish those pesky posts from your feed? It won't completely get rid of them, but hopefully it'll make your feed more people than promotion.
According to Mashable, it just takes a few taps, and it works on both Apple and Android operating systems. You may be familiar with Instagram's "reporting" tool. It's the three little dots that are on the right side of your feed, beside the usernames. That's your key to a more ad-free scrolling experience.
First, find an ad. Then, click on the three dots to reveal a menu of why you don't want to see the ad. You've got a few choices: Either the ad's not relevant or you've seen it too often or it's inappropriate. Here's the trick: If you tell Instagram that the ad is inappropriate (if you do it a few times, that is — probably the only time you've ever scrolled through looking for an ad on Insta), you'll be set. You'll have to do this as you see ads. Reporting a few ads isn't the ticket to an ad-free feed. It's a pretty sneaky trick, but if you've been avoiding Instagram because of ad bombardment, hopefully this will provide a brief respite.
A previous report from Mashable lauded it as the solution to remove ads from your feed forever; however, all platforms update to meet and address the behaviors of the people using the app. Unfortunately, sponsored content is just part of the Instagram experience now...or at least for now. It's kind of a necessary evil. Social media platforms need to make money and they do that by providing brands with advertising space and access to their users. Unless we wanted to start paying a monthly subscription for social media, we can keep expecting ads.