A teenager was using Instagram to make $4000 per month posting memes (good work if you can get it) until the tech giant decided to crush his dreams and shut down several of his accounts.
“On July 26, 15-year-old Ben was surprised to find he couldn’t log into five of his eight Instagram accounts,” according to MarketWatch. “The meme curator, who goes by the pseudonym ‘spicymp4’ and chose not to give his last name to MarketWatch, owned multiple popular comedy accounts. One such account, @spicy.mp4, had more than 500,000 followers. Others, like @bnjee and @memeextraordinaire, each had over 20,000. “
Ben said it was his only income, and it was not worth even looking for another job, as he was making far more money on Instagram than he ever could working minimum wage. He made his money by selling shoutouts from his well-frequented page.
“I made sure to credit everything as I used to be a content creator myself and I know the frustration of not being credited,” Ben reportedly said.
The report said that Instagram has recent purged more than 30 “highly popular pages,” and that the purge was the result of content creators stealing memes without giving credit the original creators, despite Ben claiming that he was sure to give credit where it was due.
“These accounts were disabled following multiple violations of our policies, including attempted abuse of our internal processes,” an Instagram spokeswoman reportedly said.
Of course, the tech giant, owned by Facebook, does not just target meme accounts. It uses its “terms of service” as an arbitrary means of banning high-profile political figures – mostly conservatives – too. Alex Jones, Paul Joseph Watson, Laura Loomer, and others were all banned within minutes of each other from both Facebook and Instagram in May.
Loomer is suing the company for $3 billion in damages.
Peter D'Abrosca is a freelance investigative reporter, author, and conservative political commentator.
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