Instagram Will No Longer Allow Private Individuals to be Paid to Promote Firearms

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Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:41 am

Instagram Will No Longer Allow Private Individuals to be Paid to Promote Firearms

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Instagram just launched the next attack in the corporate campaign to marginalize gun owners.

The Facebook-owned social media giant will not allow influencers to be paid to promote vaping, tobacco products, or weapons, according to CNBC.

The move comes as dozens of other corporate entities work to crack down on legal gun owners. Companies like YouTube, Citigroup, Shopify, Walmart, Kickstarter, and FedEx have all announced policies in recent years designed to restrict lawful products and impede gun enthusiasts from making money selling and promoting firearm-related items.

Instagram’s new policy will prohibit companies from promoting “branded content” that advertises firearms. “Branded content” is a feature that allows a company to promote a post by an “influencer” (a user with a large following) to reach a wider audience. The social media company had already banned advertisements that promote firearms, but until now companies could “boost” posts from private accounts by paying Instagram to send those posts to more people.

The “branded content” feature was announced in June of this year, and an Instagram spokesperson told CNBC that this is the first time they’ve restricted the types of items that can be advertised using the feature.

SEE ALSO: Facebook Censorship Continues: Minors Will No Longer See Ads for Gun Accessories
Instagram’s “influencer” industry has exploded since the company’s founding in 2010. Today, millions of individuals work in markets from fashion to fitness to firearms to build a following big enough to attract partnerships with businesses looking to promote their products. Some estimate that businesses will spend as much as $15 billion on influencers by 2022, up from $8 billion in 2019.

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