August 14, 2022

A number of Russian influencers have voiced their upset at Instagram’s removal

As Ukraine continues to face onslaught after onslaught of airstrikes and refugees scramble to safety, Russian influencers are breaking down because the country has gotten rid of Instagram.

Russia decided to ban the popular social media site last week, with the service being suspended on Monday, March 14, after concerns that owner Meta was allowing “calls for violence” against President Vladimir Putin and his soldiers on its platforms.

Reality TV star Olga Buzova, who boasts over 23 million followers, posted her final message before access to Instagram went down across the nation, appearing tearful as she insisted she would “continue crying” in its absence.

Buzova went on to say, “I just shared my life, my work, and my soul. I did not do this all as a job for me, this is a part of my soul. It feels like a big part of my heart, and my life is being taken away from me.”

She, of course, is not the only influencer reacting this way. Several online personalities shed tears in response to the news that their main source of income would be taken offline.

A video that has since gone viral online shows a Russian blogger sobbing, saying: “To me, it’s all life. It’s the soul. It’s the one thing with which I wake up, fall asleep. Fucking five years in a row.”

Popular singer and model ‘Hanna’ – real name Anna Vladimirovna Ivanova – posted her final message on her page on Saturday with a lengthy caption informing her nearly five million followers amassed over ten years that they would be parting for the foreseeable.

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She wrote, “I’m sure that everything will get better and there will be even more of us, but for now I wish us all only PEACE and strength to survive all the difficulties”, before swiftly directing everyone to her Telegram channel so they can still find her content.

The Telegram redirect appears to be a common thread among many Russian influencers affected by the Instagram axe. The company itself is owned by Russian billionaire Pavel Durov, who was ultimately ousted from the company he founded after he refused to release private data on Ukrainians to Putin’s government.

Durov, who has Ukrainian heritage himself, maintained he would not jeopardise the lives of ordinary civilians no matter what and despite being exiled from his country, insists he “would do it again without hesitation”.


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