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Instagram unveils offensive comment filter, anti-spam tool in 9 languages

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Instagram today announced some much-needed new tools to help users of its mobile app enjoy the service without toxic comments and spam. One is a new filter designed to block certain offensive comments and the other is basically a spam filter supporting nine languages.

Instagram claims that the pair of newly announced tools at their users’ disposal will help keep the service a safe place for self-expression and inclusive communities.

Clamping down on toxic comments is now easier with the comment filter that automatically blocks certain offensive comments on your published posts, as well as in live video.

The new offensive comment filter is in addition to Instagram’s existing arsenal of tools, like comment reporting, account blocking and so forth. To access this automatic filter, tap Instagram’s “…” menu from your profile, then tap the new Comments option.

“We’ll launch this comment filter in English first, but will offer it in more languages over time,” notes the Facebook-owned company. The filter is optional and can be turned off at any time.

To help fight spam, Instagram is rolling out another new filter. Powered by machine learning, it looks for any obvious spam in comments and blocks it from your posts and live videos.

According to Instagram:

Our team has been training our systems for some time to recognize certain types of offensive and spammy comments so you never have to see them. The tools will improve over time, enabling the community’s experience of sharing to improve as well. We hope to make these filters available in more languages as our algorithms improve.

At launch, this dedicated filter will remove spam written in a total of nine languages—English, Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic, French, German, Russian, Japanese and Chinese—with additional language support to be implemented in the future.

Instagram is available free of charge via App Store.