Instagram has banned #curvy. The social media site, which has more than 300 million monthly users, is preventing users from searching for the hashtag and instead suggests other, more specific, hashtags to search for. These include #curvywomen, #curvygirl and #curvyfashion. 

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Users started complaining about not being able to search for the hashtag within the past few days and many have immediately complained about the site’s decision. Many have claimed it is setting the positive body image movement backwards. Instagram has been responsible for the rise in popularity of such plus-size models as Tess Holliday but this appears to be a serious blow to those who want to celebrate their curves. 

A spokesperson for Instagram, speaking to Mashable, has explained the company’s decision to ban the hashtag. They claim it is because many pictures which include #curvy violate their nudity policy. 

"I can confirm that we did block the hashtag #curvy. It was being used to share content that violates our guidelines around nudity," the spokesperson wrote in an email. "Please note that the block has nothing to do with the term 'curvy' itself."

However, despite their protestations concerning the actual term, their decision to ban such a hashtag appears to be hypocritical. Hashtags for ‘skinny’ and ‘thin’ have not been blocked yet, as this writer discovered, they also bring up pictures which violate Instagram’s nudity policy. 

Furthermore, as Mashable notes, hashtags which include sexually explicit terms such as ‘dildo’, ‘b***h’, ‘vaginas’ and ‘clitoris’ are all still searchable. 

It is, quite frankly, illogical. Unfortunately, whilst many users are furious at the site’s decision, it’s unlikely to change any time soon. Those supporting the ‘free the nipple’ movement continue to clash with Instagram over their nudity policy and the site doesn’t appear to be inclined to change. 

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