About a year ago, Instagram blogger Sara Melotti published an article titled "Instagram Created a Monster", alleging massive fraud among so-called "influencers" on that platform.
A year later, she re-visits the situation, and finds it's worse than ever.
In an accompanying article, "INSTAGRAM CREATED A MONSTER 2 - Frauds, an epidemic of fake influencers and the death of Meritocracy", she writes:
Things in the platform changed dramatically over the past year and today’s instagram world is a very very scary scenario: fake influencers, black markets, scams, an epidemic of fake likes and comments and inflated engagement. The degree of trickery reached a point where nothing is believable anymore and with millions of dollars invested in Influencer marketing the word FRAUD is not an exaggeration anymore but an urgent matter that needs to be addressed.
I’m writing this for you and for my fellow creatives that are feeling incredibly discouraged by how things are going. I’m writing this because it’s time to talk about it. I’m writing this because I’m sick of seeing unfairness across the platform and I’m sick of living in a world where meritocracy is becoming a utopia; good people are being robbed, scumbags are getting rich and talented artists are pushed away from a world that wouldn’t exist without them. It’s the wild west out there today, we’ve created a terrifying fraudulent ecosystem and if we do nothing about it, we’re setting ourselves up for failure as a society.
There's much more at the link. It makes for very interesting reading, not least because a lot of what she says applies to social media across the board, not just to Instagram. Recommended.