Russian citizens who have been peddling lifestyle and wares on Instagram for a living have grown increasingly desperate after President Vladimir Putin banned the company.
Putin last week took action against the social media company and banned it in the country as a source of “misinformation” about Russia’s invasion of neighbouring Ukraine.
The company and Putin have been trading with Facebook since the war started three weeks ago (MVRS) – Get Meta Report Desperately trying to walk a tightrope between a platform that allows users to express themselves and being Russophobic or violent.
The ban itself went into effect on Monday, and since then the internet and Russian media have been flooded with outcry over the loss of local influencers.
One influencer was so frustrated that she posted on the platform, “f-king for five years in a row” that she’s been working on bringing herself and her ideas and brand to her Instagram followers, and now she’s starting to question it purpose of life.
“For me, it’s life. It’s the soul. It’s the one thing I wake up and fall asleep to,” she said.
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The reaction sparked an immediate reaction on Twitter outraged by the Ukrainian invasion and the carnage it continues to cause.
Why are Russian influencers so frustrated?
Russian reality TV star Olga Buzova has been one of the most heartbroken, saying losing access to the platform made her feel like her life was “taken away”.
“It’s part of my soul,” she said in a seven-minute video about not having Instagram anymore, and wept throughout, often referring to feeling lost and uncertain about the future.
Influencers affected by the ban do have some financial sadness – a well-regarded, popular influencer can easily earn six per year by representing a variety of brands and connecting with events, pop culture and certain trends. digits.
Russia has a string of wildly popular stars who are closely watched across the region, even in countries that were once part of the Soviet Union but still remain Russian-speaking.
Names like Valeria Chekalina, Buzova and Liza Lukasheva have a combined total of nearly 40 million followers, so a blanket ban on the platform and the country — though not entirely unexpected — has come with a financial shock.
“I’m not afraid to admit that I don’t want to lose you,” Buzova laments to her 23.3 million followers in the video.