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What’s Not Allowed on Instagram

What's Not Allowed on Instagram
Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

What’s Not Allowed on Instagram

As the internet and social media continue to evolve, so too must the platforms on which they exist; for the betterment of the platform as a whole and to make the internet an overall safer and more accessible place for everyone. That being said, Instagram has its own rules and regulations for safe and quality posting that every user should know about What’s Not Allowed on Instagram. 

What's Not Allowed on Instagram
Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

These kinds of posts are not allowed on Instagram this year, as per the site’s Terms of Use Agreement and Community Guidelines. Keep your account in good standing and your followers happy by following our guide on what not to post in 2020. 


It’s all too alluring these days to gain some quick fame by flashing a body part or just putting your entire self out there for the world to see. Celebrities do it, so why not the rest of us? Besides the obvious implications of posting your naked body for the world to see, posting nudity on Instagram is likely to get your account flagged or even deleted, as it’s a clear violation of the app’s community guidelines. 

Photos of breastfeeding or post-surgical scars on breasts are allowed on Instagram, but if you’re thinking of posting a quick nipple shot or something of the sort, you’re not going to like the consequences. 

It’s important to really think about posting something like that as well. Unfortunately, the world isn’t all sunshine and rainbows, and despite your best efforts, you just don’t know who’s watching. The person on the other end of that screen could be someone with malicious intent, and you’re baring yourself for everyone with an internet connection to see. 

Not to mention, if you’re underage and posting such content, you could be setting yourself up for unwelcome advances or attention from people involved in horrible acts like trafficking. Human and sex trafficking are absolutely real threats to young girls, especially. Traffickers prey on those who easily give up information via social media or the web, and target sites/apps like Instagram to identify their next victim. 

Use common sense when you’re posting on social media, and don’t try to post nudes on Instagram. 

Fake Accounts 

Ever since Instagram’s launch and subsequent success in 2010, websites all over the globe have been selling Instagram followers and likes. When you buy Instagram likes or pay for Instagram growth service to increase followers for your page, you’re giving a much-needed boost to your content. While many sites have made a living from scamming Instagrammers and providing fake or bot accounts instead of real people, there are sites that still exist who only provide 100% real and active Instagrammers

Instagram is constantly working to purge as many of these “fake” accounts as possible to make the platform a better place for everyone who uses it. If you’re buying followers or likes, don’t get caught with hundreds or thousands of fake followers, or your account could be flagged or even banned. Instagram’s platform aims to be as genuine as possible in the coming years, and fake accounts take away from the desired authenticity. You can try some free hashtag generators


Photo by Katka Pavlickova on Unsplash

Let’s take a moment to be entirely honest: plagiarism is not only wrong in an ethical sense, but it’s quite disrespectful to the content owner and yourself. If you’re stealing someone else’s content to post on social media, you come off as having no self-respect, and that’s going to get you nowhere. 

People spend time creating their personal content and brands, and for you to reach in, steal what they’ve created, and post it as your own is morally reprehensible. Take the time to create your own content, or don’t post at all. 

Instagram doesn’t allow copyrighted images or content if you don’t own the rights to it. Everything you post is yours, so don’t steal other peoples’ content in order to increase your following. The internet is a much bigger place than you might think, and you will get caught eventually. Something like plagiarism doesn’t go unnoticed for long, even on a platform that’s over a billion strong. 

Unlawful Content 

You’re probably thinking something like, “Duh! Everyone knows you don’t put unlawful content on social media.” And while it should be a given, you’d be amazed at how many posts make it through filtering and get in front of the wrong eyes. Instagram has a few specific unlawful content guidelines that you should follow:

  • No offering sexual services 
  • No buying/selling firearms or weapons
  • No buying/selling alcohol tobacco products 
  • No endorsing or praising terrorism, hate groups, or criminal activity
  • No buying/selling illegal or prescription drugs 
  • No selling of live animals or endangered species
  • No sexual content involving minors

These guidelines are in place to make Instagram a safer place to post and view content, without the worry that you’ll see a sexual favor post or illegal drug sale. The content you post should be tasteful and follow these guidelines explicitly. 

Your Baby’s Pictures or Videos

Though filming or photographing our children is something parents of all ages love to do, if your video or photo contains partial or complete nudity, Instagram will likely remove it. In fact, Instagram has an entire page in its Community Guidelines called Tips for Parents about how to post content involving your child. 

The unfortunate truth is that there are people out there who could use such images or videos for nefarious purposes, so ensuring that nudity is kept to a minimum, if any, is a top priority. 

Please understand that there is no discrimination occurring against your child or any child in particular. In fact, most social media sites or apps have a similar policy in place, and it’s truthfully just to protect our kids. 

These measures prevent traffickers and other predators from seeing, locating, or getting involved in a child’s life. 

Let’s be honest; do you really want a naked picture of your baby online for the entire world to see? Once you post it, it’s there forever in a sense. Even if you delete something, people can take screenshots of the post-pre-deletion and save that image on their personal devices.  Follow these simple rules on what’s not allowed on Instagram to grow your audience this year. 

Instagram infographic