Unwanted private messages and comments from strangers will soon be a thing of the past for young people under 18 who create a profile on Instagram. Parent company Facebook takes measures to protect this target group and makes it more difficult for advertisers to reach young people.
For example, Instagram accounts of young people under sixteen or in certain countries under eighteen are automatically set to private. It also makes it more difficult for potentially suspicious accounts to find youth accounts and limits advertisers’ ability to reach young people with their advertisements.
A private account means that users must first submit a follow request in order to see a profile. As a result, people cannot simply leave messages or see posted messages in the publicly accessible parts of Instagram, such as via hashtags linked to a message.
The possibilities for advertisers are also limited. They will soon only be allowed to show advertisements to young people under the age of eighteen based on their age, gender and location. With this, Facebook restricts previous advertising options based on interests and activity on other apps and websites. These measures will apply to Instagram, Facebook and Messenger, Facebook’s chat app.
Facebook will start in a few weeks with the tightened measures in the United States, Australia, France, the United Kingdom and Japan. Other countries will follow later.