Leading social media websites like Twitter and Facebook have come under fire for censoring pro-life advocates, and now Instagram has been added to the list of offenders.
The pro-life group Let Them Live tells LifeNews that several of its lnstagram posts no longer appeared on hashtags. This resulted in post reach and overall engagement dropping sharply, as most engagement comes from hashtags and lnstagram’s Explore feature.
Let Them Live began appealing blocked posts directly to lnstagram days later and eventually some of the posts began appearing on hashtags.
But weeks later, all of Let Them Live’s posts were removed from all hashtags and from Explore and the account was shadowbanned.
The head of the group tells LifeNews it plans to protest at Instagram’s California headquarters on June 12th.
“We will not let social media bullies push us out of the public square. We will bring our concerns to the press and directly to lnstagram at a Rally Against Censorship of Pro-Lifers,” said Emily Berning, President of Let Them Live. The Rally Against Censorship of Pro-Lifers at lnstagram’s headquarters in Menlo Park from 11am to 2pm on June 12th, 2019.
In an interview with The Daily Wire, Berning said she believes her organization is being targeted because of its pro-life message.
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“It is especially concerning to us that we were removed from hashtags like #Feminist and #Abortion because it should be a discussion with voices represented from both sides,” Berning said. “The fact that Instagram completely shadow-banned our account without notice is highly concerning. We do have an internal connection at Facebook that filed an internal report, and we are waiting to hear back on the details of that.”
Berning said the group’s Instagram page is fundamental in their mission because it has “been the best platform when it comes to identifying new, young pro-life advocates.”
“It is the second most active of our social media accounts, with some individual posts reaching nearly 100,000 accounts,” Berning added. “Instagram is a critical battleground for the pro-life movement because a large percentage of the platform consists of teenagers and people in their early 20s, many that haven’t been exposed to the pro-life viewpoint.”