Paper Number

2213

Paper Type

Short Paper

Abstract

Research shows that image-based social media are detrimental to users' body image. So far, efforts to mitigate these effects have had limited success. Addressing this gap, we propose that using built-in content moderation tools, such as unfollowing and muting, could help protect users’ body image. In particular, training users in applying these tools to limit their exposure to appearance-related content could prevent them from comparing themselves to this content, thereby improving users’ body image. However, such training is only practical if users do not already apply content moderation tools. In this research-in-progress using a sample of young female Instagram users, we show that only one-third have ever used muting. Further, only 4% unfollow appearance-related content, though they report it as particularly troublesome. Hence, there is untapped potential for teaching users how to moderate their content on Instagram better. We outline a planned intervention study in this paper.

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Jun 14th, 12:00 AM

Content moderation on Instagram to improve users body image: A pilot study

Research shows that image-based social media are detrimental to users' body image. So far, efforts to mitigate these effects have had limited success. Addressing this gap, we propose that using built-in content moderation tools, such as unfollowing and muting, could help protect users’ body image. In particular, training users in applying these tools to limit their exposure to appearance-related content could prevent them from comparing themselves to this content, thereby improving users’ body image. However, such training is only practical if users do not already apply content moderation tools. In this research-in-progress using a sample of young female Instagram users, we show that only one-third have ever used muting. Further, only 4% unfollow appearance-related content, though they report it as particularly troublesome. Hence, there is untapped potential for teaching users how to moderate their content on Instagram better. We outline a planned intervention study in this paper.

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