In its Wildlife Selfie Code, World Animal Protection encourages tourists to take photos of wild animals without participating in the wildlife entertainment industry and photograph them in their natural environment, where they are free to move around. They also believe that it can be a traumatic experience for them when they contact with humans daily.
"We care about our community, including the animals and the wildlife that are an important part of the platform", Instagram spokeswoman Emily Cain told National Geographic. You'll see if when viewing these flagged hashtags, but users posting photos under the same hashtags will not receive the warning.
"It's about helping people understand: This is what goes into that two-second interaction for you to get that photo", she said.
"You are searching for a hashtag that may be associated with posts that encourage harmful behavior to animals or to the environment", the warning reads in part, alongside a link to more information about wildlife exploitation.
The introduction of the warning feature is part of a fine line that social networks walk between stopping the spread of negative images and censoring users.
According to WAP numerous animals who tourists take photos with are stolen from their natural habitat and are then kept in cramped conditions and passed around from tourist to tourist, causing them extreme stress.
The warning also will pop-up for hashtags that advertise the sale of exotic animals or animal parts, according to Instagram.
Celebrities including socialite Paris Hilton and reality start Khloe Kardashian have been roundly criticised for posing for pictures with chimpanzees and orangutans at private zoos by the UN's Great Apes Survival Partnership, who branded them "chumps with chimps" a year ago. However, what most people fail to realize is that these animals have no desire to be used as selfie props. Unfortunately, these animals don't like being held or handled. "We're trying to do our part to educate them".
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