BEWARE COSPLAYERS: YOU COULD BE BANNED FROM SOCIAL MEDIA!

@cumbernatch by @seattletolondon (www.seattletolondon.co.uk/) (Image credit: @seattletolondon / Courtney)

I may be guilty as anyone! Those Cosplayers come out, either on social media, or to their local Comicon convention and show how close they can look to the real cartoon or superhero or even movie star. I find it amazing that people are willing to go to the lengths they do to look like someone famous.

And now Instagram, after seeing a photo of a Cosplayer portraying Doctor Strange is going to ban this photo. We are photographers here and may agree or disagree with this ban, but, read on before judgements are made…… From Digital Camera World:

Instagram is a platform that many content creators rely on heavily to publish their media collaborations, partnerships with larger brands and sponsored posts. As much as we can all get a little annoyed with influencer culture and paid posts, this is what allows many people (photographers included) to make a living. 

For cosplayers, having their accounts terminated or in this case disabled can impact not only their form of income, but can be a very hard thing to deal with after putting in the hours and effort to build up a respected platform and large social following. 

This has been the case for @Cumbermatch(opens in new tab) on Instagram (Peter Clark), who has been accused of pretending to be and impersonating the famous Doctor Strange actor Benedict Cumberbatch, whom Peter very closely resembles as a lookalike, both outside of cosplay and when portraying the character of Marvel’s Doctor Strange.

To many, Peter is a talented member of the cosplayer community, and he has even been invited to Marvel movie premieres dressed as the character Doctor Strange. This supposedly doesn’t matter to Instagram, after the platform yesterday disabled Peter’s account for allegedly pretending to be somebody else. 

Here’s Cumberbatch meeting Cumbermatch

Despite looking strikingly similar to his doppelgänger, Peter has never claimed to be the actor, and has even posted images online of the two of them photographed together to show that they are very different people. Peter has always been extremely transparent online, making it explicitly clear on all of his social media channels in the bio space that he is NOT the actor Benedict Cumberbatch.


Something needs to be done about instagram’s ridiculous algorithms and policies, especially as a new rival app opens: BeReal. (Click Here). BeReal is a new photo sharing social media platform that’s been labelled by some as the “Anti-Instagram” app – everyone seems to be switching as consumers are fed up and have presumably reached the final straw of Instagram’s idiotics.

While impersonation on Instagram is a very serious thing that does happen (It has happened to me previously with one of my accounts) and should be handled firmly, Instagram as a company and platform clearly don’t have algorithms intelligent enough to differentiate between cosplay and identity theft. 

Once flagged up, an expert or at the very least a real human should be tasked with assessing these circumstances, where Instagram very clearly failed to take the correct approach when deciding to suspend Peter’s account, when he had done absolutely nothing wrong. 

What do you think about the “NEW” 123PhotoGo? I would appreciate comments so I can make this the best site for all photographers.

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