Instagram influencer Karyn Johnson was just trying to express her admiration for Ashley Graham when she was unexpectedly rebuffed. A few days ago, Johnson posted a collage featuring the model in a blue bra and black bootie shorts. The images give the impression that Graham was outside for some sort of photoshoot.
“You gotta love Ashley Graham for living totally and fully unapologetically,” she wrote in the caption. “Having had the opportunity to meet, hangout and work with her more than a handful of times, I can tell you she is always as full of life and confidence — just as much as you would imagine from seeing her in these pictures!”
Johnson awoke the next day to find that her post had been removed by Instagram, and she had no idea why. So she reposted the photos, with the caption: “I woke up today to find that the images I posted last night of @theashleygraham had been removed by Instagram and I have no idea why!?”
She pointed out that these images are no more revealing than the fitness and bikini images Instagram is inundated with. “These are images of a beautiful woman in a sports bra and underwear, who is obviously shooting some sort of workout video or something. I see images of women constantly on Instagram in workout wear and bikinis, etc., etc. of all shapes and sizes… so why the heck would these be removed!? I can only pray that it has nothing to do with her size and that her ample curves are visible. I love you Instagram, but I gotta call it out!”
Johnson’s followers were equally perplexed, including Ashley Graham herself. “Wow!! That’s crazy,” the model commented on the post. “There is still work to be done in changing people’s perception.”
Others are bluntly calling out the social media platform. “Instagram has a history of fat shaming,” one follower wrote. “This is ridiculous and they need to get their head out of their arse.” Another wrote: “It’s crazy they will get rid of a picture instantly but yet continue to let people stay on Instagram who continuously bully and harass people.” Added another: “If that was someone skinny this wouldn’t have happened. She’s a stunner.”
Some tried to figure out the reason behind the removal. “It could have been copyright infringements if these are not your original photos? I saw some that @theashleygraham posted yesterday. Maybe that was the reason?” one commenter wondered. Another follower suggested: “Might [have] been sent in by people who don’t like to see this. @theashleygraham is beautiful and people need to learn to appreciate everything. Maybe there were fights in the comments???”
Graham is used to being trolled on Instagram, but not by them (if that’s even why it was removed). In August, the Sports Illustrated model tried to put a stop to body-shaming after Graham shared a slideshow of 10 women wearing Swimsuits for All bikinis and one-pieces from her own collection. The women are all posing and smiling on various beaches, but some Instagram users chose to write in diagnosing them with various health issues.
“Don’t make comments on my page about health, especially if it’s not your own body,” Graham requested in an Instagram story. “Your health is your business. Don’t put your insecurities onto other people. Beauty comes in all shape and sizes. Media should be showing a more diverse group of women and their different skin tones, bodies, and ages altogether.”
So far, Johnson’s new post hasn’t been touched by Instagram, and we hope it stays that way.