Instagram bans ‘plastic surgery’ filters

Last month, the platform unveiled new guidelines regarding diet and cosmetic surgery-related content.
Johannesburg – In the age of social media, manipulating your selfie with the help of online filters has never been
easier; be it adding a cute pair of cat ears, or virtually plumping up your lips or trimming down the size of your
nose.
But Instagram is clamping down on special effects that mimic the results of cosmetic surgery.
Spark AR, the augmented reality platform behind the filters, took to Facebook recently to announce that it is
removing all effects associated with plastic surgery from the Instagram Effect Gallery, and postponing the
approval of new effects associated with plastic surgery until further notice.
Instagram’s public policy manager Emma Collins said: “We want Spark AR effects to be a positive experience
and are re-evaluating our existing policies as they relate to wellbeing.”
The move is the latest step taken by Instagram in a bid to safeguard the wellbeing and mental health of its users,
in the face of concern about the potentially negative consequences of being exposed to certain content on social
media.
Last month, the platform unveiled new guidelines regarding diet and cosmetic surgery-related content, including
a new rule stating that social media posts promoting the use of certain weight-loss products or cosmetic procedures
with either a promo code or price will be hidden from users under the age of 18.
“We want Instagram to be a positive place for everyone that uses it and this policy is part of our on-going work to
reduce the pressure that people can sometimes feel as a result of social media,” Collins said. AFP

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