A few months back, Instagram did what some might consider the right thing and disabled searches for many hashtags that it deemed inappropriate. Many disagreed with the change but if you’re a parent with a teen on Instagram, it was probably good news. According to an article at Pando Daily, some of the hashtags are now searchable again.
Some of the hashtags that have returned are ones that never should have been banned, like #Sexpistols, but others have come back with a warning, and probably shouldn’t be there ever again.
One such hashtag is #thinspo, which is short for thinspiration, and favored by young girls who want to be impossibly thin. Girls who desperately want to be way thinner than is healthy might search that hashtag for and view the pictures for motivation, and other girls who are losing weight to the point of risking their health are tagging their selfies with the hashtag to make it easier for others to find.
While we don’t applaud the return of searches for the hashtag, at least Instagram is doing something in the way of helping users who may struggle with an eating disorder. Instead of being taken directly to search results for the #thinspo tag, users see the warning at right. If they click on “learn more”, they are taken to the home page of the National Eating Disorder Foundation.
If your daughter is struggling with body issues, you might want to keep a closer eye on her Instagram use.
Contact ThirdParent any time for help and resources for monitoring teen internet activity.