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Social media fans BLAST ‘fake’ Instagram ‘plant 1 tree’ pet photo craze

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NETIZENS are blasting a dubious trend on Instagram that has led millions of users across the globe to post photos of their pets under the guise that it will help the planet.

Social media fans have questioned the veracity of the campaign’s pledge that it will plant one tree for every image of a furry friend shared on the platform.

A dubious trend on Instagram that has led millions of users across the globe to post photos of their pets under the guise that it will help the planet

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A dubious trend on Instagram that has led millions of users across the globe to post photos of their pets under the guise that it will help the planetCredit: Instagram
The viral trend pledges to plant one tree for every pet picture shared on Instagram

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The viral trend pledges to plant one tree for every pet picture shared on InstagramCredit: instagram
More than five million pet photos have been shared on Instagram in support of the campaign

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More than five million pet photos have been shared on Instagram in support of the campaignCredit: instagram

In particular, critics highlighted that the origins of the viral craze are murky, meaning it isn’t clear who will plant the trees and where.

One person wrote on Twitter on Tuesday: “I mean I think the new Instagram Story function is neat & your pets look fun, but who is the original user that is going to plant the trees?”

Another chimed in: “No one [is] verifying who exactly is apparently planting the trees, and [there is] no link to their page.”

And a third said: “I don’t wanna p**s on anyone’s cornflakes but no way are 2.3million trees gonna be planted cos people are posting photos of their pets on their insta stories.”

The trend has been around for months but picked up pace this week, accumulating more than 5million posts on Instagram.

Users are sharing pictures of their pets – be it dogs, cats, rabbits or fish – to their Stories accompanied by the campaign’s official sticker.

That sticker features a picture of a dog and a promise that one tree will be planted for every pet picture shared on Instagram.

When users tap on it, they can look through the Stories of others who are participating in the trend.

Currently, there is no official link to a website on the sticker to provide more information on what happens after users share the pictures of their pets.

As it turns out, people had good reason to be sceptical.

After the trend went viral, the charitable organisation behind the campaign on Tuesday admitted responsibility and apologised.

Plant A Tree Co clarified on Instagram that they had started the “Add Yours” trend as a “fun tree planting campaign”.

However, as the trend picked up traction, they had to remove the sticker as they did not have the cash to plant that many trees.

They said they deleted the original post after just ten minutes. However, it continued to spread like wildfire on people’s Stories.

“We immediately understood the potential this post had and believed we didn’t have the capabilities and resources to keep our end of the post,” they said.

“Though we deleted the post, it continued to spread through people’s stories.”

The US-based group said that Instagram had “stripped” them of the credit of starting the global campaign, leading to mass confusion over its origins.

Despite the project’s pledge being broken within minutes of its launch, some social media nuts praised the campaign for flooding their feeds with pet snaps.

One person tweeted: “Stop telling people that the instagram people are not actually going to plant the trees. i want to see the pet photos”.

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In other news, Google Chrome users are being warned to delete the browser amid fears highly sensitive data is being harvested.

Facebook has announced that it’s changing its name to “Meta”.

The company is working to create lifelike avatars of its users that they can control in a virtual world called the “metaverse”.

And, Apple’s system that exposes creepy iPhone apps that track your location or snoop on your browsing history has finally arrived.


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