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Instagram will soon let people set up filters to block hateful message requests

People will be able to block both words and emojis.

instagram logo on blurred background
Image: KnowTechie

Social media platforms like Instagram can be great for keeping up with friends or following your favorite content creators, but for those that are making the content, hateful, abusive messages can be just around the corner.

This is especially true for those with larger followings. Now, as part of an ongoing effort to improve its platform, Instagram will soon allow people to set up filters that instantly block abusive direct message requests. The company makes it clear it isn’t monitoring your normal messages with friends, but that it will help you maintain message requests.

In the blog post announcing the feature, Instagram notes, “We understand the impact that abusive content – whether it’s racist, sexist, homophobic, or any other kind of abuse – can have on people.”

instagram hidden words filter
Image: KnowTechie

Essentially, people will be able to go to their settings and there will be a new section in the privacy section called Hidden Words. Instagram is working with anti-discrimination and anti-bullying organizations to help create the initial lists of blocked words and phrases.

You’ll also be able to set up words, phrases, and even emojis that you want to instantly block from DM requests. This is also where you can set up predefined terms that will be blocked in your comment section, as well.

So, what happens to blocked messages? Well, they will technically be available in a hidden folder that you can navigate to. Then, from there, you will need to actually uncover the messages, as they will be covered so you aren’t hit with a bunch of terrible things. If you see a message from someone that you feel doesn’t belong there, you can uncover the message and accept the message request. You can also report the message from the same screen.

Overall, this is definitely a solid addition to Instagram, and one that I would definitely like to see come to more social platforms.

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