Instagram Bans Plastic Surgery Effects
In another attempt to make Instagram a more positive experience, they announced last week that they would be removing all effects that depict or promote cosmetic surgery from the Instagram Effect Gallery. Spark AR, the company responsible for the majority of these augmented reality filters, is re-evaluating their policies in regards to the well-being of their users. The removal includes face lifts, lip injections, and other face-changing filters. During this process, Spark AR will not approve of any new filters and will remove any other negative effects reported to them.
It is time to say goodbye to “Plastica,” “Bad Botox,” and “Fix Me.” Since August, Instagram users have had the freedom to create their own effects, animations, and filters. This concept had taken a turn for the worst when the Effects Gallery saw a filter which mimics the effects of bad botox and another which marks a person’s face before a cosmetic procedure. Research shows that these types of effects contribute to Instagram’s growing problems with promoting unrealistic body images, mental health issues, and poor self image among users. Especially among young users, plastic surgery effects are not the best influence.
Daniel Mooney, creator of “Fix Me” countered that his effect was meant to critique the unglamorous process of plastic surgery and show that perfection is over-rated. Others think that the problem isn’t the effects, but the fact that the most followed influencers of the platform are creations of plastic surgery. Instagram will have to navigate many more issues before completely ridding the site of plastic surgery and other negative experiences. The removal of plastic surgery effects follows the ban of marketing weight loss products and even removing “likes” in some countries. Hopefully, Instagram will find a balance that promotes healthy lifestyles and creates a more positive experience for all users.
By Sonja Grunfeld