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Instagram’s Adam Mosseri says regulation could lead to mass censorship on the platform

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In a recent interview, the head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, warned about censorship on the platform if the government was allowed to regulate social media. The remark was in response to a report that Facebook knows Instagram can be toxic for teenagers and can be seen as ironic when considering Instagram’s constant censorship.

On September 14, the Wall Street Journal published a report suggesting that Facebook (which owns Instagram) is aware that Instagram can be toxic for teenagers, especially young girls. In an appearance in Peter Kafka’s podcast from Recode, Mosseri defended Instagram.

Kafka suggested that perhaps to avoid some of the flaws highlighted in The Journal’s report, more government regulation was needed. The suggestion came after the Instagram head answered his previous question using a car analogy.

“We know that more people die than would otherwise because of car accidents, but by and large, cars create way more value in the world than they destroy,” Mosseri said. “And I think social media is similar.”

“If we continue with the car metaphor, there’s tons of regulations around cars over the years,” said Kafka, before asking, “Do we need that level of regulation, government intervention with social media?”

Mosseri warned that more government regulation would result in more censorship.

He said if you take “something like ‘hate speech’ and you define it very, very broadly, and you have huge fines for every time someone doesn’t come down fast enough. You create a very strong incentive for companies like ours to take down tough content, and that runs the risk of slippering into censorship.”

Mosseri’s remarks, however, are quite ironic when you consider Instagram’s history of mass censorship of even legal content that users are all to familiar with.

Just last week, Instagram faced criticism for censoring the hashtag #naturalimmunity on the platform.

If you’re tired of censorship and surveillance, join Reclaim The Net.

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