It looks like Instagram went full Marie Kondo last night... the social media platform deleted all inactive accounts and bots (defined as accounts that haven't been used or logged into in the last 6 months or more.) Resulting in celebrities & influencers alike losing Hundreds of thousands if not millions of followers.
Those affected include: Selena Gomez - 2 million followers lost
James Charles Half a million followers lost
Instagram has said:
"We're taking a number of steps to limit this kind of unwelcome behaviour. Accounts we identify will receive an in-app message alerting them that we've removed the inauthentic activity given to their account from others. We will also ask them to secure their account by changing their password. Accounts that use these types of apps share their username and password, which is sometimes used to give inauthentic likes, follows and comments to others."
My thoughts on this are, it might be annoying and even debilitating for influencers & celebrities out there who make money off of their large followings - but a real follower base is more active and leads to higher engagement then a large fake following. As micro-influencers become more coveted to brands I think this is a positive move for Instagram, and helps with people hogging those prime usernames they never use.