Instagram said it is investigating a sudden mass suspension of its users’ accounts which was apparently caused by a glitch. The confirmation came as thousands of complaints from furious Instagrammers began to flood other social media platforms.
“We’re aware that some of you are having issues accessing your Instagram account. We’re looking into it and apologize for the inconvenience,” Instagram’s communication team said in a tweet on Monday.
Many users of the Facebook-owned platform received notifications informing them that their accounts had been suspended and that they were allowed “to disagree with this decision” within 30 days.
According to the Down Detector website, the outage affected tens of thousands of people.
help @instagram my private account has been blocked and I have so many Halloween pictures to post 😡 ! Will accounts get unblocked later, whats happening??#instagramdown
— Sarah Maxwell Bishop (@smax1980) October 31, 2022However, analysis from The Verge suggests it could be “millions” of users, primarily iPhone owners. That estimate is based on the scale of the fall in follower counts, which, according to the outlet, was also caused by the glitch.
Why has my @instagram account been blocked? I have neither ever uploaded objectionable content nor comment led against the guidelines? What for have I been barred from the platform??
— Murali S. Ram (@muralisram) October 31, 2022The account of Manchester United forward, Cristiano Ronaldo, for example, appeared to have lost three million followers, the outlet noted, while Instagram’s own primary account was down by over a million. Such falling numbers, The Verge argues, gives “some perspective as to how many users are experiencing the issue.”
According to the platform, an Instagram account can be suspended if it doesn’t follow the guidelines, if it cannot be confirmed, and if it is not visible to other users.
In October last year, a bug sent both Facebook and its subsidiaries, Instagram, Messenger, and WhatsApp, offline. Twitter at the time was one of the few major social media giants not to be affected. In February, however, thousands of Twitter users were also hit by what the platform described as a “technical bug,” telling users that “something went wrong.”