Instagram Shadowban: What You Need to Know



Instagram’s elusive shadowban has perplexed users for years, affecting their engagement and reach. With insights from CEO Adam Mosseri, let’s demystify this shadowban, its causes, and ways to prevent it.

I. Understanding Instagram Shadowban

While “Shadowban” isn’t an official term, Instagram can limit post visibility or account reach. This could lead to reduced engagement, frustration, and completely hidden content. As this affects creators and marketers, it’s essential to understand Instagram’s stance.

II. The History of Instagram Shadowbans

  • 2018: Instagram refuted the existence of shadowbanning.
  • 2019: Instagram noted that certain posts won’t feature on the Explore Page even if they meet community guidelines.
  • 2020: Mosseri responded to concerns about Black creators being suppressed. Changes included a review of content filtering and more transparency about content guidelines. Additionally, Instagram revised its nudity policy due to the #IWantToSeeNyome campaign.
  • 2021: Instagram launched the “Account Status” feature, allowing users to see if their content was removed and the reason behind it.
  • 2023: Mosseri emphasized the importance of creator reach and shared that they’re testing notifications related to limited reach due to watermarks.

III. Why Do Shadowbans Happen, and How Do We Prevent Them?

While not completely clear, certain actions might increase shadowban chances:

  • Breaking community guidelines.
  • Purchasing fake engagements or using bots.
  • Excessive and spammy activity.
  • Using banned hashtags.
  • Overusing a suddenly popular hashtag.

A. Prevention Tips:

  • Avoid unauthorized software.
  • Stay away from banned hashtags.
  • Limit rapid activity spikes.
  • Avoid repetitive actions, like sending identical messages.

IV. How to Reverse a Shadowban?

If you suspect a shadowban:

  • Please report it to Instagram.
  • Unlink apps using bots.
  • Regularly review your hashtags.
  • Take a short break from Instagram.

V. Duration of an Instagram Shadowban

It varies, but most reports suggest 2-3 weeks. Some have experienced longer durations. The best strategy is to avoid getting shadowbanned.

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