Being a social media influencer isn’t easy. Between all the #sponcon, carefully curated/totally staged images, and the endless filters, it’s a full-time job. That’s actually the dream—to make enough money selling crap people don’t need to people you don’t know to not have to have a real job. It was working pretty well for Australian influencer Sally Mustang, but now the Australian is left feeling “really scared” after Instagram banned her from the platform.
Let’s back up for a minute here. Mustang, who’s currently pregnant, shared the news with her followers recently as well as posting a photo of her growing baby bump that many (and, it would seem, Instagram in particular) deemed a little too risque for the platform. As a result, the company warned her that her account was due to be deleted and she would be banned from the platform. And it seems that’s exactly what has happened.
Mustang’s boyfriend, Mitch Gobel, has since posted a video showing Mustang visibly upset about the ban and voicing her concern for her financial future now that she can’t shill crap to randoms online.
“It makes my heart so sore. I’m really scared. I’m five months pregnant and my whole livelihood has disappeared,” she says in the video.
View this post on Instagram
“It’s my creative outlet. It’s my memories. My voice, my community, my family, by businesses. It’s all disappeared. To be five months pregnant and adapting to all the change that’s going on already it feels so unfair. So harsh.”
Yahoo! says that the original video, which has since been deleted, continues: “I’m so, so disappointed in whoever’s running the show there because I just don’t understand what kind of message that sends out; that Instagram doesn’t accept pregnant bodies? Or that being empowered and loving yourself if not ok?”
Mustang also insisted that she “will not be silenced or agree with Instagram’s absurd censorship rules.” Unfortunately, it seems she has been silenced, at least on her original Instagram account, which had over 300,000 followers before the ban.
Gobel has continued posting photos of the couple, though Mustang claims that her partner’s account was also “threatened with deletion” so they planned to tone it down with the racy photos. However, he did voice his support for Mustang and the racy photos she was known for posting.
“It’s a beautiful photo which tributes the miracle of pregnancy, new life and what it is to be a woman,” he wrote.
“I want to be aloud [sic] to follow any women’s experience of pregnancy because it inspires me, it educates me, it helps me see a bigger picture. It’s NOT sexual. It’s beautiful and I don’t want that aspect of life taken away from what I experience on your platform. Pregnancy should be celebrated, not shamed and we want to see change.”
What will happen with Mustang and her future on social media is anyone’s guess, but I suppose she might have to opt for more conventional employment moving forward.