United Kingdom

Facebook and Instagram apologize after 'mistakenly' blocking the hashtag 'Sikh' for three months

Instagram and Facebook are apologizing after admitting they 'mistakenly' blocked the hashtag 'Sikh' for months.

In a tweet sent out by Instagram on Wednesday, the company said the ban on the hashtag has been ongoing since March 7 and was brought to the platforms' attention this week.

Instagram claims the tag was added to a ban list after a 'report' was 'inaccurately' viewed by its teams.

While Instagram removed the block on the tag almost immediately, it took Facebook - Instagram's parent company - several more hours to rectify that alleged mistake.

'Thanks for your patience today. We investigated this issue and found that these hashtags were mistakenly blocked on March 7th following a report that was inaccurately reviewed by our teams,' wrote Instagram in a tweet. 

'We became aware that these hashtags were blocked today following feedback we received from the community, and quickly moved to unblock them. Our processes fell down here, and we’re sorry.'

Neither Instagram nor Facebook has offered any further elaboration on why and how 'Sikh' was blocked or how the the ban escaped detection for so long. 

The statement seems to suggest that the decision, unlike other apparent mixups in recent months, was not the result of the companies' algorithms but was instead the product of human error.

MailOnline has reached out to Facebook for further clarification but did not receive an immediate response. 

Instagram and Facebook have struggled at times in their response to weed out misinformation and violative content (stock)

This is the second time Instagram has issued an apology for inadvertently blocking a tag this week.

Previously the platform shut out #BlackLivesMatter after receiving an influx of posts with the tag - the result of a wave of protests around the US relating to the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. 

That ban was caused by the platform's anti-spam tool accord to the company. 

Football news:

Christophe Dugarry: Messi really could have given Griezmann more passes. Antoine lost confidence
Sane passed a medical for Bayern and went to meet with the club's management
Neuer - in goal, Hakimi and Davies burn out the flanks, in front-Sancho, Muller and Lewandowski. Collected Dreamtime Bundesliga-19/20
Casillas is almost not on the video in honor of Spain's victory at Euro 2012. Perhaps this is due to his promotion to the post of President of the FFI
Setien's future in Barca is under threat. The players don't support it
Trent on motivation: Ronaldo and Messi never relax. The more you win, the more you want to continue
Conte on criticism: attack me, Not the club or my players. There are people who want to see the glass half empty