This is big: Together we’ve moved Instagram to help end cruel wildlife selfies

December 04 2017

Our Wildlife Selfie Code has successfully influenced one of the biggest social media sites to educate its users about how posting and sharing pictures with wild animals photos may be supporting animal cruelty behind the scenes

Worldwide, over 250,000 supporters have signed our Wildlife Selfie Code, and thanks to your incredible support, Instagram has launched a new content advisory page, to educate users about the issues these photos cause for wild animals.

We’ve been working directly with Instagram, one of the world’s biggest social media sites, to show that it’s wrong to take animals out of their natural habitats for photo opportunities.

Now, when users search Instagram for hashtags like #koalaselfie and #slothselfie, they will be presented with a warning message. The message tells users that the selfies and photos they’re searching for may be associated with encouraging harmful behavior to animals.

Many of the animals featured in tourist selfies are stolen from their natural habitats. They are kept in cramped conditions and passed around from tourist to tourist, causing extreme stress. 

A young tiger in a cage at a tourist attraction in Thailand, where people take photos with wild animals

Your voice is powerful

Everything we’ve achieved to end cruelty to animals in tourism has been supported and pushed forward by people like you.

We understand that most tourists who take wildlife selfies do so because they are animal lovers. This latest achievement is proof that we’re inspiring people to make the right choices for wild animals.

An elephant is chained at a tourist attraction in Asia

A caring transition

With a global influence, Instagram can change the conversation around wildlife selfies, and promote the fact it’s unacceptable to use wild animals as photo props.

We’re delighted Instagram recognises that animal abuse happens both in front and behind the camera. You've helped us show Instagram the cruelty behind the scenes.

Now, when one of Instagram’s 800 million users searches for harmful interactions with animals, they will be warned about the dangers of this trend. 

Still time to sign

By signing the Wildlife Selfie Code you are committing to cruelty-free selfies and adding your voice to the movement. If you haven't already, you can still add your name here.

Read more our report ‘A Close up on cruelty: The harmful impact of wildlife selfies in the Amazon'

With a global influence, Instagram can change the conversation around wildlife selfies, and promote the fact it’s unacceptable to use wild animals as photo props.