It’s undeniable: The Black Lives Matter movement is having a social media moment right now. Activists, actors, brands and everyday people alike are taking to their stories and feeds to post about racial inequalities, systemic racism and social justice. But what will happen when, inevitably, Instagram and Twitter feeds go back to “normal”? Will everyone forget about the educational resources they saved and shared? Will racism fade into the background of America’s collective consciousness? For Black people and other people of color, it won’t. The hard work of addressing systemic racism in the United States and across the world is just beginning, and there’s no reason it should end when people revert to posting bikini pictures, brunch snapshots and other regularly scheduled content once again.
Here are 10 Instagram accounts you can follow right now to make sure that Black voices and racial justice issues continue to populate your feed and stay fresh in your mind. This list is by no means exhaustive, but it is a great place to start.
Given that it’s the official Instagram account of the Black Lives Matter Global Network, there is really no excuse for you to not be following this one. The account posts content paying tribute to the victims of police brutality, screenshots of their tweets tackling current social justice issues, and action items, including announcements for town halls and links to petitions. @blklivesmatter is the central location for anything and everything related to the Black Lives Matter movement and an important source of official content for staying involved in the movement.
I recently discovered this account through some of my friends’ Instagram stories, and I have been extremely impressed. @soyouwanttotalkabout tackles any and every social justice issue plaguing the United States through visually appealing, informative threads with text and images. Each post is a little history lesson, and recent themes have been oriented toward discussions brought about by the Black Lives Matter movement. Systemic racism, white supremacy, prison labor and the war on drugs are just a few of the topics that @soyouwanttotalkabout has broached in the past week. If you are interested in bite-sized educational creations to keep your knowledge up to date, this account is a great resource.
Black Visions Collective has gotten a fair amount of airtime on social media recently for its identity as a queer, Black-run grassroots organization working to elevate the Black community in Minneapolis. Its Instagram presence lives up to its mission statement. @blackvisionscollective has been posting graphics related to defunding and abolishing the police, videos from protests and resources for Minneapolis community members regarding upcoming protests and the small grants that the nonprofit offers. @blackvisionscollective also recently hosted a heavy but joyous Instagram Live broadcast in which co-founder Oluchi Omeoga discussed the Black Lives Matter movement with the one and only Lizzo. The video is still available to watch on the organization’s grid. Even if you don’t live in the Minneapolis area, following @blackvisionscollective is a great way to stay connected with the work going on at the forefront of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Not only is Black, nonbinary actor Indya Moore a television star in FX’s “Pose,” they are also an outspoken activist on social justice issues. @indyamoore has a link tree in their bio taking you to bail funds, a fund for Black trans women leaving prison and other action items, but the advocacy doesn’t stop there. Moore consistently posts about racial injustice and systemic inequality, and since the killing of George Floyd by police, they have dedicated their grid and stories to photographs paying tribute to victims of police brutality, infographics relaying details about protests and community events, and screenshots of Twitter conversations addressing the intricacies of intersectional (Black, LGBTQ-affirming) activism. Moore is also quick to respond to accounts that comment on their posts and engage in meaningful dialogue about race and queer identities that is often passionate and compelling. And every so often, Moore posts a meme or beautiful picture of themself relaxing to remind their followers that fighting for social change can always coincide with joy.
If inclusive wellness is your thing, @bykwest is the account for you. Kira West’s feed is generally populated with stunning photos of herself out and about in the world, captioned with paragraphs that function like journal entries detailing her thoughts. Lately, though, West has taken a more political angle, posting about self-care for the Black community, next steps to keep the Black Lives Matter movement going and inspiration for free ways to take care of yourself, which lists 20 more Instagram accounts that promote wellness for Black folks. West is the first to point out that self-care is a critical component of activism, and her grid is a beautifully curated list of information, resources and inspiration.
If you’re attentive to Instagram stories, you’ve probably seen one or two of @globalgirlhood’s posts before. Its threads on “Pride and BLM” and “Black Activism in the United States” have both made the rounds recently, offering valuable information about each topic coupled with bright colors, pretty fonts and compelling images. @globalgirlhood knows how to draw the eye and educate at the same time. The account promises in its bio to use “the power of authentic storytelling and social media to connect womxn of all ages, backgrounds, and identities like never before.” Essentially, intersectional feminist content at its finest.
Speaking of intersectional feminism, activist Candace Reels’ account @femalecollective has been posting Black, queer, female-affirming content since its founding in 2016. Four thousand twenty-five posts later, Reels is still keeping it simple and brightly colored with succinct text posts advocating for self-love and inclusion. @femalecollective’s most recent post reads, in a slanting white font set over a bright green background, “There is no one on this planet who is entitled to treat you like s—.” Though most of Reels’ posts are similarly playful despite heavy subject matter — take, for example, “Worry about dismantling white supremacy, not texting your ex” — Reels is not afraid to venture into more serious territory, taking on transgender rights and performative allyship. @femalecollective has always been a platform for discussing social justice issues that the rest of social media is just now getting around to and promises to provide exactly the reminders that you need to see every day on your Instagram feed.
Though @officialmillennialblack originated as an account to promote UK-based author and creator Sophie Williams’ forthcoming book, “Millennial Black,” it has evolved to become a resource for Black women and their friends, admirers, lovers and allies. The account posts matter-of-fact, informative threads about allyship, keeping up the momentum of anti-racism, and strategies for self-care for tired black women, alongside photographs promoting powerful, beautiful Black models and actors. Williams’ content has become more focused on anti-racism in recent weeks, but her account has always uplifted Black female excellence and art and promises to continue to do so, all while maintaining a pink and Black aesthetic.
Jack Lam is yet another Instagram content creator dedicated to making beautiful, informational threads tackling unique subject matter. Since Lam is Asian American, most of the posts are related to allyship and navigating difficult conversations surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement, as well as race and racism in the U.S. Lam’s posts are simple, text-based creations that are easily saved for further reflection later on if you can’t take the time to read them the moment they pop up on your feed. Lam also makes sure that each post is carefully oriented toward tangible action so as to provide real support for aspiring anti-racist activists, not just now but into the future.
If you’re curious about what it means to abolish the police, look no further than MPD150’s official Instagram account, @mpd_150. The Minneapolis-based grassroots organization describes itself as “a people’s project evaluating policing” and has taken to Instagram to discuss through text, illustrations and infographics what a world without police might really look like. MPD150 frequently collaborates with Black Visions Collective and Reclaim the Block, two other Minneapolis-based nonprofits, but like these organizations, MPD 150’s activism goes far beyond the Twin Cities. As all the best activist accounts do, MPD150 includes a link tree in its bio with action items and other resources, both for people who are skeptical about a police-free future and want to learn more, and for people who are committed to defunding the police and want to make an impact. MPD150 promises to consistently bring relevant and actionable content regarding police brutality to your feed.
Social media is by no means the only place for activism, but ensuring that your feed is consistently populated with content from Black creators or centered around racial justice is an excellent way to pursue active anti-racism on a daily basis, all while enjoying beautiful images and graphics. Happy scrolling!