Instagram apologizes for removing account from user and giving it to Andres Iniesta

Acclaimed Portuguese novelist Jose Saramago once said, "You know the name you were given, you do not know the name that you have."

In the curious case of an Instagram user that bears the same name as Barcelona’s midfielder Andres Iniesta, the Instagram user knew the account name he was given, but he did not know the account he had. It was taken away and given to the Catalan player.

So, what did the non-Barcelona player Iniesta do? He decided to document and write his complaint on Medium. He titled it: "How Instagram closed my account and gave it to a football celebrity." Talk about going straight to the point.

Apparently, the regular Iniesta’s account was deleted with no explanation whatsoever. After reviewing the terms of use, he attempted to contact Instagram to see why he lost his account, but he failed to reach anyone. 

Then, he found out what had happened:


"A couple days later, other followers reported that suddenly Andrés Iniesta the football player appeared on their "following" list. And they don’t even like football!.

Today, as I’m returning home from holidays, all my friends called me saying that they were seeing updates on their timelines from the other Andrés Iniesta, not mine."


You hear that, Instagram? Regular Iniesta does not even like football. Naturally, regular Iniesta was dumbfounded. He could not make sense as to how Instagram could take his account with no notification:


"What pains me is that all of this has happened without any explanation, not even a twitter response from Instagram.

I’m not a celebrity, and I don’t want to be one. I just don’t like things being taken away from me."


He proceeded to end that message with "Andrés Iniesta (not a famous football player)." Thanks for the clarification, Iniesta.

So what happened next? After Instagram became aware of their mistake, they proceeded to rectify the issue and apologized to the regular Iniesta:


"It was an error on our part, pure and simple. We inadvertently identified your account as an impersonator — even though it obviously is not. As soon as we were made aware of the mistake we reactivated your account. We’re working to put in place new internal processes so that this doesn’t happen again. I also want to make clear that neither the soccer player Andrés Iniesta, nor his representatives, had anything to do with this incident.

I know you also made multiple attempts to reach Instagram to get an explanation, without success. Nothing is more important to us than our community, and there’s no excuse for our failure to be responsive in what I know was a very frustrating experience. For that we also apologize."


Hopefully, Instagram learns a lesson from this peculiar case of identity crisis.