In November of 2018, Instagram announced that they would be taking measures to “reduce inauthentic activity” in the social network. What this meant is that they were going to start eliminating ‘likes’, comments and fake followers, especially from accounts that were using third-party apps to artificially inflate their popularity.
Today, a lot of users of the social network have found that their number of followers has significantly deflated. There are those who have lost up to 20,000 followers in one night, and there are extremely large accounts like those of some celebrities and media that have lost millions.
While there are those who believe that it is about Instagram taking measures to eliminate inactive or false accounts, there are those who report that it could be an error since the numbers of followers look different from different accounts for some users.
On Twitter, there are dozens of comments and reports about missing followers. The social media specialist, Matt Navarra, has been putting together a list of popular accounts that have lost followers throughout the day.
For example, Selena Gomez’s Instagram seems to have lost 2.3 million followers from one day to the next. Ariana Grande seems to have lost 3 million. The official account of Nike lost more than one million, and the Instagram of BBCNews, more than one hundred thousand.
After all the chaos caused by social networks, Instagram later decided to announce:
We’re aware of an issue that is causing a change in account follower numbers for some people right now. We’re working to resolve this as quickly as possible.
— Instagram (@instagram) February 13, 2019
With this measure, Instagram adds to the cleanups that Facebook and Twitter already did during 2008 to avoid trolls, bots, and fake followers. Facebook, the owner of Instagram, is under heavy pressure after being informed that the information of some 50 million users ended up in the hands of the Cambridge Analytica consultant, who worked for the presidential campaign of Donald Trump.