Instagram Tips: How To Fix an Instagram Hashtag When a Photo Doesn’t Show Up in Search Results

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UPDATE SEPTEMBER 2016:

Hi everyone! I’m sorry you’ve found yourself here on this page, and that your Instagram hashtags aren’t working – I know how annoying that is. The method I describe in the post below is no longer working for several users. Two things to know:

  1. If you are using a third-party app to post photos, such as Adobe Lightroom or Dropbox, that seems to cause the hashtags to not work.
  2. This seems to affect brand-new accounts more than established ones.

Unfortunately, I’m not an Instagram expert and I am not currently (in September 2016) experiencing this issue so I do not yet have the solution. I would hypothesize that Instagram may want to discourage overuse of hashtags, especially on new accounts, so as to limit “spam” accounts, but I’m not sure. Some people in the comments below have had luck submitting a help ticket to Instagram. Actually, there is lots of activity in the comments section of this post that I hope will help someone out. I will update the post if I learn more.


I recently started a daily photography challenge loosely based on the project #100HappyDays. I wanted to create my own hashtag in order to keep my photos grouped together and organized for me personally, so I chose one that nobody else had used yet, #stephlovestoday. I happily began tagging my photos with it and they would show up in the search results for that tag without a problem.

Then I noticed that one of my Instagram photos wasn’t showing up in the search results for that hashtag. I thought this was odd, since I’d never had any problems before. I did a bit of a Google search and finally found the information I was looking for, buried in the replies to a Yahoo Answers post. I’m sharing it here in the hopes that I can be helpful to someone who might be encountering the same problem I was!

Here’s what it comes down to: there are a few broken hashtags on Instagram. When you tag using those tags, they ruin it for all their hashtag friends and none of the other tags you use on that photo will show up in their respective search results.

I don’t have a definitive list of all the broken hashtags, so you’ll have to do a bit of trial-and-error if you’re encountering this problem. But here are a few to watch out for (in my experience):

  • #photography
  • #instagram
  • #love

These are all popular hashtags, so I think they all work at least sometimes, but if you’re encountering an issue with one of your photos not showing up for another tag, chances are one of these tags are causing an issue.

I’ll show you an example. Here’s a photo I took for my photography project. I tagged it with a few hashtags.

DSC_0229Unfortunately, the search results for my personal tag don’t show this photo, despite it being tagged!

DSC_0242How annoying. Luckily, I put all my hashtags into a comment. If you tagged your photo in the caption and not a comment, you’ll have to delete and re-post your photo for this fix to work.

Here’s how to fix it.

Insta1Locate the broken hashtag. Again, this is where trial-and-error might come into play, but for me it was definitely the #photography hashtag.

Insta2Click “Comment” underneath your photo and it’ll take you to the screen above. Swipe to the left, and then click the red trashcan to delete the comment.

Insta3Once you’ve identified the problem, you can tag to your heart’s content!

DSC_0223And happily, your photo will now appear in the search results for all the hashtags you used, including of course your own personal tag.

I hope this was helpful! If you have had a similar problem, share your experience in the comments.

You can follow me on Instagram @lifeinlimboblog.

  • Thank you!!! I was getting so frustrated with them not working for some reason! :-)

    • stephaniepellett

      Hi Ivana, I’m so happy this could help you out! I was so frustrated at the time too, so I completely understand. :) You’re so welcome.

  • Vanessa Yeung

    I have tagged #lanadelrey only .. really one tag but it is not working still :(.#lanadelvanrey is a normal tag so idk why so strange

    • stephaniepellett

      Hi Vanessa, I’m not too sure what the problem is here! Have you tried deleting and reposting your comment with the hashtag #lanadelrey? If you give me some more details maybe I can try to help!

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  • Sinead Irwin

    It still isn’t working! This is really frustrating because I have contacted Instagram 3 times now and nothing has been done. My account is fairly new and if I can’t hashtag I can’t get likes or followers. I REALLY NEED HELP WITH THIS! :'(

    • stephaniepellett

      Hi Sinead, thanks for your comment. I’m really sorry this fix isn’t working for you. Unfortunately the above article is pretty much all I know about this problem so I’m not sure what the issue is in your particular case. What’s your instagram handle? Maybe if I saw an example post of yours I could try to tell what’s going on.

  • Cycle16

    Genius! I followed your steps and it turns out that hashtag Photography was the problem for me too, thanks!! :D

    • stephaniepellett

      Hey Cycle16, I’m so glad to hear that this fix worked out for you too! :)

  • Wow I can’t believe that worked! Thank you so much. It takes a little patience to look through each tag and see which is wrong but when you take out the few that don’t work, the others work again! :)

    Thank you from me @GxStep!

    • stephaniepellett

      Hey Jay, I’m so glad it worked out for you too! It’s such an annoying little bug, but I’m happy to help if I can.

  • Janeris Puntocom

    YAY!!!!! That helped a ton. I’m a photographer and was putting #photography in most of my posts. That was messing it up for me. I wonder why that is. I put #love a lot too. I thought it was cause you can’t tag more than 10 words. Thanks for this -@janeristhephotographer

    • stephaniepellett

      Hey Janeris!! I’m really happy this worked for you, I remember how frustrated I was before I figured out what was going on. As far as I know there’s no limit to the number of tags you can use! You’re very welcome.

      • Mr Doovde

        The limit is 25.

  • george michael

    Thanks so much, Stephanie. Instagram was no help with this issue. I got it sorted thanks to you. My hashtag problem was ‘sex’. Believe it or, not. Lol

    • stephaniepellett

      Hi George, I’m so glad it helped you out! I’ll remember not to tag that one in future ;)

      • Jan arvi Viado

        Any tips for me?? Im just using a single hashtag on all the shoes that i want to buy #arvislist is the one i created… I was able to tag several pics already but i cant seem to see them when i do the hashtag search. Tia

        • stephaniepellett

          Sometimes it takes a couple of days for all the tagged photos to show up in the hashtag search results. Hopefully it worked out for you!

  • Armando Rojas

    This was new to me and fixed my problem thank you!!!!

  • Cory

    Thank you!

  • What a fantastic article…. Very insightful! Thank you :) :)

    • stephaniepellett

      Thanks Rachel!

  • Thank you so much Stephanie, it was a really great advice! :) My hashtag problem was #handmade.

    • Ash

      Oh wow. #handmade? Really? I have some handmade products I am going to be posting to Instagram in a few months. I surely would have used that hashtag. Glad I am reading through these comments and taking note. Thanks!

      • stephaniepellett

        No problem, hope it helped!

  • Samantha Z

    Thanks so much for this! You’re a lifesaver <3 I love your blog, it's such great reading (:

    • stephaniepellett

      Hey Samantha, thanks so much for your comment. Glad I could be helpful and I’m glad you like my blog!

  • tidymom

    “Locate the broken hashtag” —-how do you know which is the broken hashtag if all your hashtags are not working? – thanks so much

    • stephaniepellett

      Hey Tidymom, when one hashtag is broken it basically stops all the others from working too! I’d recommend deleting the comment with your hashtags and using some trial-and-error to determine which might be the one causing the trouble. Look for any one that is particularly general like “love” or “photography”, etc. Good luck!

  • Rocky Lie

    My own hashtag is not working… I already delete it and put hashtag again, but it didn’t show up in feed… yesterday is just work fine,.. but suddenly, it not worked..

    • stephaniepellett

      I’ve had that happen before too – unfortunately I’m not sure how to solve that problem!

      • Inês Laires

        I dunno’ if it’s because they don’t allow you to put your hastags again. I tried it as well and it didn’ work.

        • luc.photography

          I had the same problem, after deleting #photography my photo still wasn´t showing in tagged feed. But then I tried this, an it worked just fine!
          1. tap 3 dots under the photo then tap EDIT
          2. mark everything (already without pohotography hashtag or any broken hashtag) and cut it.
          3. tap save, or done or what is there written
          4. now repeat step 1.
          5. paste everything with correct hashtags
          6. tap save

          then tap on your hashtag and it should appear in tagged feed.
          I worked for me, so I hope it will solve your problem too :).

          Happy instagramin´ ^_^

          • Jolie

            I don’t get it

          • Sarcastic Dog

            How do you know if a hashtag is broken? I can’t identify which tag is causing none of my tags to work and I don’t see any of the tags I used on any of the banned tags lists.

          • Amy

            Hey thanks for your help but it didnt work for me. I wanted to ask your help please I’m going nuts lol. yesterday for the first time when i commented hashtags right away right after i posted my (food) pic, it didnt work (it usually always does). none of the hashtags are broken or banned. my photo doesn’t even come up under the location tag. my profile is on public, i tried unlinking then again relinking my account to my Facebook profile. i tried deleting the ig app, updating the software on my phone, re-downloading the ig app, deleting and repasting the tags on my pic, nothing works! even worse, when i tried commenting one of my old photos with a random tag, it didnt show up even when i scroll all the way down to recent posts where it should be. (I recently blocked a bunch of people on ig I’m not sure if my tagging ability was blocked because of that or what). PLEASE HELP.

          • This happened to me today too! And I was also posting a food pic with the average food tags. What is going on? Two days ago everything was fine!

          • piroozp

            Did you all find a solution? I have been experiencing this since 5 days ago. thanks

          • Dorothy Gale

            Did you find the solution?? This is happening in all my devices, I even created a new account and it doesnt work

          • piroozp

            Yes! I was able to solve the mystery. Indeed in my case it was the Dropbox bridge that had caused the problem. I SUSPECT the problem arises because of some internal change recently that has affected a number of upload apps, that now have to race to become compatible again. I switched out of Dropbox and now use Gramblr {Gramblr. Com). It worked like a charm. It is very easy to use. It us available for windows or apple op systems. If you don’t use a desktop then try switching to a different app from what you now use. At least until they catch up with the change.
            I hope this helped
            Good luck

          • Kay

            I’m not sure what you mean. What does dropbox have to do with instagram? I don’t use dropbox at all. Please explain, thanks!

          • piroozp

            simply that dropbox offers a way to post images stored on it to Instagram via its export facility.

          • Kay

            do you know what else it could be? I got shadow banned out of nowhere, didn’t do anything that’s not allowed, I have a pretty small account, do you have any ideas of what it could be?

          • UCFilmSociety

            This literally just happened to me. It worked fine 3 days ago and now it’s not working at all. I did everything you dis as well. Did you find a solution?

          • Miri May

            Hi, did you find a solution yet? Because I’m in the same situation ….going crazy…

          • Kay

            did you find a solution? Did ANYONE find out anything about this??

          • Miri May

            I didn’t but after two weeks it just started to work again. No idea why…

          • Kay

            did you post meanwhile, or just waited 2 weeks?

          • Miri May

            I waited^^

          • Kay

            was there anything that told you it might be working again? or you just decided to give it a go? Cuz I check my own hashtag periodically, and Im still not seeing it come up, so I’m assuming the ban is still there.

          • Miri May

            I’m sorry, but I have really no idea. There wasn’t any notification or anything, I just logged out of my account and after two or three weeks it worked again. There doesn’t seem to be any logic behind it.

          • Kay

            you weren’t even reporting the problem regularly? Just logged out and waited?

          • Miri May

            I think I did, but there was no reaction on that.

          • piroozp

            HI Any solution? I also went nuts doing what the above article recommended to no avail. Have any of you guys found a solution?? mine stopped showing up 5 days ago. everything before that is fine, nothing shows up afterwards though. same hashtags as always. Weird. Frustratingly so. A new account is not an option for me as I use mine for business (promoting my business). So I can go on an account hopping binge.
            Hope someone found a solution. Thanks

          • Walden

            Same problem here. So frustrating

          • Kay

            I’m having same issue, did it ever resolve for you Amy?

        • Same problem here. I have created my second IG account 4 days ago. On the first two pics hashtags work fine, but stop working on newer pics posted. It’s not a problem of broken hashtags, because all of them failed in my pic, however work on other IG accounts.

          https://www.instagram.com/dpunisher1337/

          • Joe van Geffen

            Exactly the same has happened to me, new account, First two pictures worked, now none do.

          • Stacy Johnson

            Did you find a solution to this Joe? The same thing is happening to me and I cannot figure out why

          • Joe van Geffen

            Unfortunately not, people are spamming instas Facebook page with complaints but still no action/comment from Instagram. It’s shit.

          • Megan

            yes I am having this same problem. None of my hashtags are working for my page. Have you had any luck in finding out what is happening?

          • Angelica

            Working yet?

          • Erica Tee

            has anyone had any luck figuring this out?

            I opened a second account and created my own hashtag but now not only does my own hashtag not work but none of my other ones register either and they are not broken or banned. Help!

          • Fkiri

            did you figure this out erica?

          • Erica Tee

            I sent instagram telling them my problem and within a few days my hashtags were back but now the problem is whenever I hashtags my pictures, I only get maybe 3 or 4 likes when my other account still works totally fine. It’s almost like my second account is private, but it’s not.

          • Isee_vivid

            Probably because it still is… try checking your hashtags from a different account and you might find that you cant see them… same happened to me… couldnt see my hashtags, contacted instagram, hashtags back on I thought but the realised that only viewable by me…

          • Erica Tee

            Yes !! You’re right!!!
            I am still gaining followers but only i can see my hashtags. Do you know how to fix this problem?

          • Ricardo Gonzales

            I’m having the same problem. Did u find a solution ?

          • Erica Tee

            Hi Ricardo.. nope no solution found and still experiencing the same problem . I have messaged IG multiple times but no one has acknowledged or messaged me back. Super frustrating. It’s like my account is blocked or something. I don’t get it!

          • Kasey Weldon

            I’m having the same issue that you’re describing Erica. Any luck yet?

          • Erica Tee

            No, no luck :(
            I ended up deleting my account because I was too frustrated.

          • Walden

            Same problem here. It’s frustrating.

          • Thu Nguyen

            Omg I have the same problem. I tried to post with another device and it seems that my photos appear in the tag search again (some non-followers liked my photo) but I don’t know if the problem is really fixed

          • Angelica

            any news?? anyone.. me too I have same issues

          • Bella

            I have a problem with my hashtags too- did it manage to work for you consistently after you tried posting from another device?

          • Josh Lou

            Using iPhone 6, could see my own hashtags but then realized that only viewable by me. Using other phone to check the hashtags, my picture is not shown in the search result. That explains the zero likes. Used the other two phones and open new iTunes account plus different IP. Same thing happened. Dead—-
            Using new phone log into old accounts not new, same thing happened.

            Now just reporting the problem everyday and so far no reply or solution yet. Problem continues.

          • Kay

            Has anyone found a solution to this at all?? Is the ban permanent? Please tell me it isn’t!

          • Angelica

            have they responded?

          • Erica Tee

            No nothing :(
            My hashtag is #wanderlustinggypsy and I have about 35 pictures but none of mine show up and no one has gotten back to me. I tried linking my account to Facebook and still nothing. People follow me no problem it’s just the hashtags that still don’t work it’s been about a month!

          • Angelica

            Wow this is disturbing. Thank you for your response.

          • Anmar Chasib

            what did you exactly written to them? erica tee

          • Anmar Chasib

            what did you exactly wrote to them? erica tee

          • Kay

            it’s because you’ve been shadow banned. It appears normal to you and your followers, but anyone who isn’t following you doesn’t see your photos, I have the same issue! Did it ever resolve for you?

          • Saša Rakić

            Kay how can I get un-shadow banned

          • Angelica

            has it started working?

          • helena

            Hi! Try this: log out from your insta account, then go back and log in with facebook, not with your password.. It worked for me😊 https://www.instagram.com/helenarawandlifestyle/

          • Ricardo Gonzales

            This works ? My pics pop up in the hashtags section when I comment the hashtags but I don’t get any other likes other than my own followers.

          • helena

            It works, yes.. There’s a problem with linking accounts..Nothing worked out for me, but this.. Do this, and ask someone who is following you, to unfollow and check your pic under the hashtag..

          • Luboš Mareš

            Have you found solution? Or someone else??

          • Walden

            Just opened my Instagram account and most of my post doesn’t show up on search. A few did show up. I already posted over 100 post. It’s so frustrating. I’ll stop posting for now.

          • Angelica

            working yet?

          • Angelica

            working yet>??

          • Seems they fixed it yesterday! :)

          • Angelica

            So it took them over a month? What did you do to get them to fix it?

          • Nothing special. Every 2-3 days I reported the issue within Instagram app (but I think it was useless), and the time fixed it. Could be a temporary hashtag ban for the new accounts, to avoid spam accounts.

          • Angelica

            Thank you so much for sharing. Did you keep hash-tagging till it was fixed? Or did you holt on the hash tags?

          • Mine has been going on for a month still no change :(

          • Kay

            did it ever resolve for you? :( i’m experiencing the same thing

          • Angelica

            BTW Im so happy to hear that it is working for you now!! :)

          • Me too ;) Thanks!

          • Kay

            Hey, have you had any more issues with the shadow ban? I’m experiencing it now, so frustrating! please help

          • No, no more issues since they fixed my account some months ago. I sent a comment reporting the issue (within app) every 3-4 days until was fixed.
            https://www.instagram.com/dpwatchfaces/

    • It does work haha. At least for me. If any of you ever need more instagram followers fast, feel free to check out Mega Gram https://MegaGram-Followers.blogspot.com

  • Ranpreet Singh Bhatia

    Thanks for sharing !!

    • stephaniepellett

      You’re welcome!

  • Wow, this post really helped me, I was so confused. I had a photo of painting dripping down a wall and the hashtag #dripping is broke, you can’t even search it. Thank you!

    • stephaniepellett

      Thanks for the heads up!

  • Ash

    Thank you! I just found out the hashtag #sexy is treated like the unwanted stepchild on Instagram. I wasn’t even being profane. I was just trying to describe a shoe!

    • stephaniepellett

      Ha! I think anything sexual is flagged by Instagram actually. Good to know though :)

  • Mr Doovde

    Anyone have a list of working hashtags??

    • stephaniepellett

      My policy is to assume that all of them work, barring the ones I *know* don’t work – ie. all the major ones.

  • OMG thanks SO much! #blog is another one, I just found out…

    • stephaniepellett

      Thanks!

  • Badan Body

    Thank you so much!!! This was such a huge help for me as I am new to Instagram!

    • stephaniepellett

      You’re welcome!

  • This is really good to know

  • Maria Olsen

    You have NO idea how long I’ve been looking for a solution to this agonizing problem! Thank you so, SO much! *kisses your forehead” THANK YOU

    • stephaniepellett

      Haha I’m so glad it helped you!

  • BlancheCL .

    Thank you so much, I couldn’t find any clear or efficient advice anywhere else, but now my hashtag problem’s solved! You rock. ;)

    x Blanche
    TheAlbatrossPhotography.blogspot.com

    • stephaniepellett

      You’re welcome, I’m glad it helped!

  • Krishna

    This helped! Thank you!

    • stephaniepellett

      You’re welcome!

  • That’s really helpful, thank you!

    Jenny
    http://www.stuff-i-love.com

    • stephaniepellett

      You’re very welcome!

  • Thank you for this! I have been wondering why my photos don’t show and it is because I was tagging them all with #photography since I’m a photographer. I won’t be doing that anymore! :)

    • stephaniepellett

      Ha! Yes, how annoying is that!? It’s the most obvious hashtag. :)

  • briab123

    I guess every hashtag is broken then? Because every hashtag I try doesn’t work. I’m a makeup artist and did a special effects makeup look hashtagged #zombiemakeup on one of the pictures (it showed up) hashtagged my next picture with the same hashtag and nothing. Follow me at @thebriabeauty

    • stephaniepellett

      Hey Briab – I’m sorry this answer didn’t work for you. This is only my experience and what works for me, but I can’t speak to every hashtag on Instagram. I can say for sure that most of mine work just fine, but then again maybe there are some that are unreliable. I know that Instagram flags certain topics for inappropriate content – I don’t see why zombies would be inappropriate but it’s possible I suppose! Good luck.

  • Anne Schroeder

    This website has a list of some of the banned hashtags: http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/4171589

    • stephaniepellett

      Thanks Anne! So helpful.

  • You Call That Journalism?

    Hey Stephanie!

    You ROCK! I’ve had this problem numerous times before. And every time it happens, I Google away for an hour, looking for the answer – with zero luck. But this is the first time I actually got the answer!

    I’m a professional photographer and tonight I posted a photo of Snoop Dog. I usually hashtag the maximum allowable hashtags, which is 30. It takes time and it’s so frustrating when the hashtags don’t work. After reading your post, I clicked on each hashtag and sure enough, #doggystyle showed no posts. It’s referring to his album, “Doggystyle”, but I thought you’d all get a laugh out of it. I guess I can see why they would ban that hashtag, lol! I just posed the photo again with all of the hashtags except for #doggystyle and voila – all of the hashtags worked.

    I had the same problem with a photo that I posted the other day of Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers. I just went through the hashtags, and for some reason #rhcp showed no posts. I’m not sure why, but now I know why the hashtags didn’t stick.

    Thanks!

    – Richard Hartog Photography

    #thankyou #yourock #whoohoo #problemsolved

    • stephaniepellett

      Hey Richard!!

      Like I said in my message to you: thank you! I’m so glad this fix worked out well for you, and thanks for telling us about some of the hashtags that gave you issues.

  • Amanda Cosat Jenkerson

    Thank you thank you thank you so so so so much! I about threw my phone out of the window until I found this article!!

  • Paulo Wutrich

    Thank you very very Much !!

  • Thanks so much for this post! Solved my problem :)

    — Michelle | MXP STYLE

  • Maribel Salazar

    I deleted the picture and reposted it with no tags but it still doesnt show up only on my news feed what can I do? :c I tried re logging in and turning off my phone but nothing works

  • dilhan altug

    thank you so much!!! I have been wondering why my tags don’t work now i know it is because I was tagging them all with #photography:D now it is working with the other tags! thank you again! love, thegottiks

  • Micki Moët

    Omg thank you! Worked perfectly. I had #bang In my caption. Don’t use it!

  • Food Lover

    That was really helpful! I’m still not sure if the hashtag is broken or is it because another one looks like it (something like sew and sewing), but will notice that in the future with more trials! Thank you for sharing! :)

  • Hi! I just had this issue today and stumbled upon your post – it was really useful. It turns out I was using the “photography” hashtag, I removed it and now it works – thanks for sharing!
    The positive side of all this is that it made me discover your blog :)

    • Ha! Thank you, I’m so glad it was helpful for you and I’m happy you like the blog.

  • Bora Kızılsaç

    mine still doesnt work :( do you have another solution :( thank you so much…

  • Alina Savra

    Thank you!! I made oreo balls and #balls cannot be used :) I just removed my caption and re-pasted it, I didn’t need to completely repost the picture.

  • Illana Cunningham

    Does this work the same as for a video

  • Ilona Middel

    Thank you so very much for sharing!! It fixed the problem for me too. Awesome!

  • Kris J

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!! I hashtagged my pictures photography and they wouldn’t come up under any other hashtag, but once I removed the photography hashtag it worked! You are a life saver!

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  • alice e

    Thank you! This was a HUGE help!!

  • Strange-1

    Gah, thank you so much! I kind of assumed people just didn’t like my photography as much as my other artwork. Now I’m going back and removing #photography and getting tons of likes and comments! I guess it’s on the “banned hashtags” list. I get why they wouldn’t want to use it since it’s too common, but why would they make it block ALL the hashtags you use? that seems silly.

  • Kb37

    Thank you sooooo much!!

  • Elena

    Thanks for the tips, this was driving me so crazy! I was able to fix it =)

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  • Anita

    WOW! I could just HUG you! Thank you for posting this. I was banging my head against the wall trying to figure out why my hashtags didn’t work. This solved it! Thanks so much!

  • Marshall Jean

    Thank you!! This worked!! I deleted the hashtags #love #instagood and #like.

  • Tanvi Shah

    Thank you so much! Reposting my picture totally worked for me. And the hashtags i was trying to use were far from being flagged, so was very confused!

  • Caroline Dita

    thanks for this post! Really helpful :) I found the same problem this morning and it was so annoying. Many thanks :)

  • Thank you for sharing!!! It’s so helpful :)

  • Sana Patel

    Thanks alot!!! This really helped me. I was so confused as to why my tags werent working. Will be blogging about it as well!! Will def give you a shoutout.

    Sanaonlife.blogspot.com
    @sanaonlife

  • Tamara Rivera

    Ah, thank you so much!! For me too it was the #photography hashtag that was making the other ones go crazy. This helped me a lot. I don’t have many followers bc I barely know many people so the whole point of me having an IG account and sharing the pics I take of my cats and of any other things is for other users that don’t follow me but like my pic can click their like! :) So I was really getting sad that my pic wasn’t showing up on the tags and was thinking it was Instagram that was banning me or something but glad that’s not the case! Finding this and reposting the photo without that tag solved the whole problem.

  • Ricardo Araujo

    thank you! This was very helpful. #Photography was my issue

  • Kelcey Rushing

    It’s March 30, 2015 and I discovered over the weekend that my tagged images were not showing up in their respective hashtag streams. I found tons of helpful articles like this one but just as I was about to go back and delete all of the hashtags I ever added, I restricted my google search to 2015 and found an article about a very recent change: they’ve decided to order the hashtag stream by the upload time/date. That means you need to hashtag your images immediately after posting them in order to see them in the stream. If you go back and tag them the next day (like I used to do, to save my followers from seeing the jumble of tags) your image will be inserted waaaay down the list with all the others that were posted around the day before. Here is the article that explains the change in detail: http://www.itchban.com/blog/2015/3/29/instagram-hashtag-changes-march-2015 I hope this saves someone a headache!

    • zhi

      thank you! a big help.. :))

    • Yuki

      Omg this helped me so much! Thanks for sharing the info. :)

    • Thank you soooo much Kelcey! I was going crazy trying to figure out what was going on. I always wait a while to add my tags, so this totally makes sense!

    • Spela Maggie Cherrylips

      Thank you! :D I tried to add some new hashtags to some photos I uploaded a week ago and it didn’t work. Now I know why. xD

    • piroozp

      I tag mine immediately. yet they dont show up since 4 days ago! Even the location tagged photos don’t show up. strange.

  • Jessica

    thank you! the best post for this bug on Instagram! The only one who fix the problem! Bye #photography! Regards to Brazil! :)

  • Amanda Metcalf

    I have this same problem but it’s every single hashtag I put, I keep tryin and I’ve had this problem for so long and it’s so annoying to the point I don’t even use hashtags anymore. Help !! I’ve tried what you said to do and it’s still not working for me.

  • selim reza

    I deleted the image and re-posted it with no tags however it still doesn’t show up solely on my news feed what am i able to do? :c i attempted re work in and turning off my phone however nothing works
    Buy Instagram Likes

  • Amy

    Hey Stephanie thanks for your article. I wanted to ask you or anyone help please I’m going nuts lol. yesterday for the first time when i commented hashtags right away right after i posted my (food) pic, it didnt work (it usually always does). none of the hashtags are broken or banned. my photo doesn’t even come up under the location tag. my profile is on public, i tried unlinking then again relinking my account to my Facebook profile. i tried deleting the ig app, updating the software on my phone, re-downloading the ig app, deleting and repasting the tags on my pic, nothing works! even worse, when i tried commenting one of my old photos with a random tag, it didnt show up even when i scroll all the way down to recent posts where it should be. (I recently blocked a bunch of people on ig I’m not sure if my tagging ability was blocked because of that or what). PLEASE HELP.

    • Same!! And I tried reposting the tags and that didn’t seem to help either. Let me know if you figure it out! The only thing I thought was maybe IG is suddenly not allowing people to post the same tags over and over on every pic??

  • Denisenmi17

    I used to # search & pics would pull up now when I search only about a dozen pull up & the # I am searching is my biz name so its not a common # what has happened I tried a couple of uncommon tags same thing

  • Michelle Peresicino

    Nothing in this article helped, respectfully. I’ve used hashtags that aren’t “broken” or “blocked” and it still does’t appear in the search. Can someone PLEASE help. Really getting so depressed over the fact that I’m now losing total business to rival competitors. Really upset and sad here.

    • Joe van Geffen

      I’m in exactly the same situation. No idea how to even get in touch with Instagram

      • Michelle Peresicino

        it’s so frustrating. I’m being told I may have been given a bug by a rival competitor?

        • Hmm, I’ve never heard of that but for your sake I hope not! One thing I know for sure is that you need to add the hashtags to the photo right after posting it. If you wait any length of time, the photo will get buried in search results and no one will ever see it, so you won’t get the results you’re hoping for. Unfortunately I don’t know more than that! Good luck!

          • Sunny

            I’ve been having the same issue for a few days too and not only has it rendered new tags on new photos useless, it’s rendered the tags on old photos useless too.

            Pretty upsetting because there’s literally no way to contact support. And when I check the help tab just typing in “hashtag” takes me to a page telling me I’ve been blocked for using it too fast. And that’s apparently false too according to others that I’ve had check.

            If anyone ever finds out what’s causing this I’d really appreciate you contacting me @sunny_haair on insta :)

          • Fanny

            Same problem here with a brandnew account for a project, I just can’t figure out why this is happening.

          • Jeannie and Mike H

            New account? Me too… perhaps that is the issue?

          • Fkiri

            I set up a few new accounts for testing. When I realised one didnt work I tried the others, same problem.

        • Joe van Geffen

          I doubt that, as I seem to be experiencing the same problems but have only just started out and haven’t got a rival competitor. how have you got in touch with Instagram?

    • Robin

      If you figure out what is happening, please do let us know! I’m having the same problem, and it’s so frustrating, as I’m trying to gain visibility as a visual artist. No one is seeing my posts. :(

      • Emilia

        Did you find a solution Robin?

        • Robin

          No, I didn’t! It’s still going on for hundreds, if not thousands, of users.

    • Jeannie and Mike H

      I’m in the same boat. Nothing shows up with my new account. Tried using the same hashtag on other accounts and it shows the pictures, so is it a new account thing?

      • Emilia

        Did you find a solution?

    • Emilia

      Did you find a solution Michelle?

  • Stephanie Pellett

    Hi Michelle, I’m so sorry this particular solution didn’t work for you! It’s been a few years since I wrote it and many things have changed with Instagram since then. I’ve left it up as it does seem to resolve the issue for some folks but it’s too bad it doesn’t help in every situation. I wish you luck, and if I figure out another fix I’ll be sure to post it!

  • Michele Castagnozzi

    Same problem here and I don’t use any blacklisted hashtags. But imagine that we use photography as hashtag how is possible that for have back the hashtags working you have to repost the photos with this hashtag? Imagine you have a thousand of photos, you have to repost again all? This have no sense, who is the genius that created this diabolical logic???

  • Robert Watcher

    I have had no issues with my hashtags showing up in Search. Last week I had a severe drop in Followers, my view count went down on individual images and when I checked into this I noticed my hashtags not working. Surprisingly, the image does not even show up with the location. I put up a couple of posts with just 2 or 3 safe hashtags, and they didn’t showup in search. Frustrating. I contacted Instagram using Report a Problem —- but have had no feedback.

    • Robert Watcher

      Well my solution was simple. I have been using the LrInstagram Plugin as a Publish Service in Adobe Lightroom, to upload directly to Instagram – including Caption and Hashtags. So it appears that as of September 3’rd Instagram has updated their protocol. So what has happened is that photos uploaded using this plugin, do not show up in hashtag search so their exposure is limited. The plugin designers say they are working on resolving the issue. So it is back to Manual entry with the Instagram App for now.

      • neil shah

        Hi Robert,

        I use Light Room too and LrInstagram to publish my photos. However I add the hashtags and location in instagram manually, once the photo has been published. However all my photo hash tags and location have disappeared from their respective streams. Have you seen your old photos disappear from their streams?

        • Robert Watcher

          I have experimented with that and it appears that Instagram will only allow hashtags to work properly when the image and hashtags are posted at the same time through their official App. I checked hashtags on my older images @robertwatcherphotos and they displayed my images still – albeit way down the list according to the timeline. Since I have gone back to manually adding the image and hashtags in the Instagram App over the last couple of days – – – all of my hashtags are now working properly, and I have started regaining followers and adding new ones based on those hashtag images showing in search.

          • Bella

            Hi, do you mean you had to post your hashtags in your caption in order for them to work properly? I’ve been having this problem for about a month now and I’m at a loss at how to fix it…

    • piroozp

      same as me. exactly. I use Dropbox to post to Instagram. my problem started exactly around sept 3rd or so. could it be that the Dropbox protocol is also causing this problem???

      • Robert Watcher

        I don’t really have any info on that – – – but I would be more inclined to think that it is Instagram changes and that posting from other applications like Dropbox causes the issues. Dropbox or lrinstagram plugin for Lightroom, are going have to figure out what the change entails and try to find a work around – if that is possible to do.

        • piroozp

          Hi. Thanks for your reply. Indeed the problem was how the changes had affected Dropbox. I changed to another application (Gramblr) and it worked out beautifully. So apparently now applications like dropbox will have to play catch up. I sent dropbox a note letting them know about the problem but of course no reply or acknowledgement was ever sent back my way. So for the time being I’ll just use Gramblr which can be downloaded from their site at http://www.gramblr.com. It is very easy to use. Intuitive, 100%.
          Thanks again.

          • Bella

            Hi, I tried using Gramblr to post my picture (with my hashtags in the caption) but it still didn’t work :/ Do you know of any other fixes? Thanks!

          • piroozp

            HI
            I am not sure this is the cause but I’ll dispense the tip anyway. Sometimes if you have a long post, or if you have too many hashtags, the application will strip the caption all together. Then you have to log into Instagram and re-paste a trimmed down version of the captions , or just paste the same caption and when Instagram tells you it can not save the changes, then start to trim it bit by bit until Instagram finds it acceptable and pastes it (saves it). I hope this aids you. good luck.

          • Bella

            Hi, I tried doing that but my hashtags still don’t work; I guess I’ll just have to wait for Instagram to fix the problem lol. Thanks for the help anyway!

          • piroozp

            Sorry it did not help. Best of luck though.

    • Emilia

      Did you figure out the problem Robert?

  • Yudha Pranata

    hey i solve this problem , but you must let your last username ,
    my first acc is : pranataz
    and i use this shit hastag #photography

    1 . make another account with another username
    ex : pranataz2
    2. change your frist account username to another name .
    ex : pranataz3
    3. change your 2nd account with your 1st account name .
    ex ; change it to pranataz
    4. you go change your real account to pranataz2
    5. you can try your hastag now !
    i ve fixed my account

    and now only give underline on my real account : pranataz_
    and i can use my fuckin hastag again !
    and the last !

    you must change your email too !
    change to the new one . !
    may it helps you all !

    • Yang Huiling

      Thanks i have tried. But it doesnt work :-/

      It happens to my new account and the posts are not showing up for 3 weeks already. For the same hash tag, it shows up when i used an older account.

      Ouch this is bad…

  • Dawn Kingsbury

    I am having problems with tagging more than 2 tags on my saved images….I cannot add and save more….is there a solution or is this a setting issue? Any help would be appreciated.

  • Hubert Henderson

    hi guys I just got here after having the same issue like ya…

    I found this method:

    http://www.lifeinlimbo.org/2014/03/31/instagram-tips-what-to-do-if-a-tagged-photo-doesnt-show-up-in-instagram-hashtag-search-results/

    don’t know if it will work for me (because I just from that page and went here to make this post)… hope this is the best solution

  • Maxi Herd

    hey, my pictures are not shown in any hashtags since 12 days. can someone help me? i tryed a lot but nothing worked, what can i do?

  • Adrien

    I had the same problem 10 days ago during five days… Then the hashtags started to works again during 3 days… Then since 24 hours they have stopped to work again… I do not understand why… But I have to admit that before the first hashtag issue I started to follow a lot of account… Then I stopped when I noticed that hashtags did not work… I restarted to follow a lot of accounts when hashtags issue was resolved and now the hashtags issue is back. Maybe it is linked? Maybe Instagram think I am a spammer?

    • Emilia

      Adrien, did you figure out the problem yet?

      • Adrien

        no… I waited for approximatively 12 days and then the hashtags started to work again. During these 12 days I did not follow or unfollow accounts. I continued to post some pictures.. I suppose that Instagram thought that I was a spammer because I started to follow a lot of account every day (60 per day).

        • Kay

          When you say hashtags didn’t work, what do you mean? Did they show up for you, but not for other people? Or you didn’t see them at all? There’s such thing as shadow ban, where everything appears normal so that you’re not aware, but new followers can’t see anything. It’s the worst kind!

  • Erin Davis

    Instagram is getting WEIRD now. Hashtags haven’t been working at all for two weeks. But suddenly today I can see my tagged posts after a search when logged into my account; meanwhile family and friends performing the same search from THEIR accounts can’t see those same tagged posts at all. None of the repair methods in this or any other discussion board fixes the problem. It’s just Instagram. They’ve got a big problem, they’re refusing to acknowledge it, and at present don’t know how to fix it. No problem with their spammy advertisements of course. These are working just fine.

    • Jazz

      Yep, identical problem. My tagged posts appear in the instagram streams when searching for them from within my account. No one else can see them in the stream when searching for them from within their accounts, though. I’ve tried all the recommended fixes. Nothing works.

      • Same thing for me, I don’t understand why Instagram doesn’t have a proper customer service/ contact which can help us with that, I have this issue since the beginning of September, I’ve tried to contact them via Twitter, the Instagram problem section on the app and an email address I’ve found on the web and so far, no answers :(

        • Emilia

          Did you find a solution yet?

          • No :( Do you have the same issue?

          • Emilia

            Yes, exactly the same problem. I think i’ve tried everything by now and it won’t go away.

          • So do I! It’s so annoying …

        • Kay

          I heard that Instagram only has 14 employees, so what can you expect from them with millions of users. They rely on algorithms to solve their problems. Did any of you guys have a resolution to this? Please update!

      • Emilia

        Did you find a solution Jazz?

    • Same, its so annoying, ive not heard of anyone getting any help or replies from instagram, they should really be doing something. Other social media sites are so much quicker & better at responding to issues. Its really starting to frustrate me now!!

    • Adrien

      Guys do you follow a lot of new accounts every day?

    • Emilia

      How are things going now Erin Davis? Did you find a solution?

  • Fkiri

    I am stuck in this rut too :( I created a new account a couple of days ago and I was getting a decent amount of interaction with other IGs for 2 days. After that everything went completely silent. I thought it was my posts that just werent generating much interest.

    Until i used another older account to look at the feed under the hashtags I used, only to find my pictures on the new account werent showing up. I then posted the same picture and used the same hashtags on the older account and the interaction was how i expected it to be!

    Tried creating another account in case something was going wrong with that specific account, but same issue. I am really really confused and disappointed by this issue as I put so much hard work into creating content over the last couple of days. Ive tried alot of the suggestions form various sites but nothing working.

    Really hope we find a solution. Has anyone solved the issue [recently]

    • Emilia

      This describes my situation. Did you you find a solution Citygirlrell?

      • Emilia unfortunately not :( I am super frustrated its been a month now. I am left completely confused. I even created a new account on another phone but again, hashtags did not work. I cannot understand what is going on unfortunately :(

        • Ursula

          Nothing new with your new accounts and the hashtag problem? I’m having the exact same problem. Opened a new account, everything worked for the first 2 pics, then IG showed NO hashtags at all. IG didn’t even let me post any hashtags any more. And when I added the hasthtags with my old accout to the comments of my new account, they didn’t show at all ;-(((((( Have you figured out something in the meantime? Did you open another account?

  • Dwayne

    Hi guys, it looks like i had it working, but my hashtags doesn’t work! :( Anyone a solution?

  • Dwayne

    I just tested a little more and i figure out that the solution is NOT put your hashtags in the comments.. Then it’s definitly not gonna work. Just the tags in the description survive!! I hope it’s working for you guys also!
    happy hashtaggin’ !!

  • Emilia

    I’m Having this problem. For the past 3 weeks my hashtags haven’t been working (they worked before). My photos appear in the hashtag feed for me and my followers, but not to the public. I’m not using any blocked hashtags. Anyone has a solution?

  • Kasey Weldon

    Has anyone found a fix for this??? None of my hashtags show up in the stream; they only show up to my followers. The first post on my new IG page worked, the second one did for a short time then disappeared. I’ve tried all of the suggestions in this thread’s post from others. I’ve tried using an IG account I had long ago that was still activated, threw my own hashtag on one of the old pictures from 3yrs ago, it worked. But when posting a new photo with same hashtag, it didn’t work. I deleted it and posted again with a different, random, and moderately common tag, still nothing. When I look at my hashtag from my personal account, I see it says “24 public posts” but none of them show up since they’re on the account that’s not working properly. Any help is appreciated!!!!!

    • Kay

      I’m having same issues you describe, did anything resolve for you? Please respond, thanks!

  • I’ve been having the same problem for a few days now. With mine, they show up in the hashtags for a few seconds after I post, and then they just disappear from all of the hashtags, kind of like they are being removed. I’ve been reporting the issue to Instagram, but no response.

    https://www.instagram.com/ashrambrand/

  • Megan Snooks

    I found that when i logged out and back in, my profile had become private for some reason. i don’t know if it was just some weird glitch as i’ve never had a private profile but when i took it off private and posted a picture with hashtags it all worked again!😁

  • Jan Kessel

    I’m having this problem for a while already now and also tried to figure it out by a lot of ways.
    My pictures always appeared in the first few seconds, then disappeared and at a later time appeared again. Sometimes after 10 minutes, sometimes even after more than 30 minutes. Of course then without any chance anymore of being seen in the hashtags search. It almost seemed to me as someone had to review my post and hashtags first before public visibility was granted.
    First I thought the problem was posting the hashtags as a comment. But later, when posting the hashtags in the caption the same problem appeared. Now I think it’s a matter of broken hashtags. But apparently there are far more broken or problematic hashtags than thought before. I went through all of my recently used hashtags and checked out the first three posts in the search for every hashtags. In some, the first post was some minutes ago, even though it should have been only seconds, because it was a kinda popular hashtags. When I stopped using these hashtags my post was showing up from the beginning and permanently. But I will check it with my next post if this was the solution.

    • Anum Kamran

      Jan did you verify this with another post? I have the same problem but then my photo does not even show up in my own hashtag which is brand new. When I click on the hashtag I can see my photo from my own profile but my friends can’t see it from their profiles unless they follow me, even though my account is not private.
      I have made a new account from business purpose and because of this issue it is impossible for me to kickstart , really frustrating.

      • Jan Kessel

        I only tried with one more picture but with the same result. I even used a totally different set of hashtags, went through all of them, cut out the questionable ones, posted the picture and it stayed in the search results. After some time I additionally posted the questionable hashtags as a comment and the picture still appeared in all the hashtag search results. So maybe that’s a solution for your problem. Let me know about your experience :)

        • Francesco

          Sorry, I don’t understand what solution eventually you have found. Have you just remove broken hashtag? I tried this, but nothing change.

          • Jan Kessel

            Yes, the solution was first posting my set of hashtags without any broken hashtags. Then my pictures showed up normally in the hashtag search results. After a few minutes, I additionally posted the broken hashtags and all my pictures still stayed in all of the hashtag search results. Doing that obviously only makes sense when the (broken) hashtags posted later on are not that popular, so that you still have a chance to be seen and don’t disappear in the huge amounts of pictures.
            But when cutting out the broken hashtags doesn’t even work for you from the beginning, it’s not a solution for you apparently.

          • Francesco

            Ok, thanks. I’m sure this solution doesn’t works for me, i alright tried to post without any broken hashtag but my post still doesn’t appear.

        • Kay

          how exactly do you know what “broken” hashtags are? I personally don’t think the hashtags are the issue.

          • Jan Kessel

            For me the hashtags were the issue because since I leave out the “broken” ones, my pictures show up in the hashtag search results again.
            I define hashtags as broken which show weird characteristics in their search results. For example hashtags which are highly popular with one million pictures or more but when you check the most recent pictures, it shows they were uploaded some minutes ago even. Under realistic conditions for popular hashtags the most recent pictures are usually just a few seconds old. When refreshing the hashtag, new pictures show up. But again it says they are a few minutes old. It almost seems as these hashtags are under observation and need to get approved first by Instagram staff.

            It might not be the solution for everyone, but for me it was.

          • Kay

            I see what you mean. How did you fix it though? Because for me, maybe I’ve used the wrong hashtag, but it’s like I got a blanket ban on my whole account right away, because older photos with my own hashtags aren’t showing up either. They show up for me and my followers, but not someone who isn’t following me. I deleted all hashtags from my latest post that caused this, but it hasn’t solved the issue. Do I have to wait it out? Or it’s supposed to be an immediate fix? thanks!

      • Luboš Mareš

        I have exactly same problem as you do. Did you find solution?

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  • hinata kun … deshou?

    My problem is I will post and add hashtags but none of my pictures will recieve likes, even if I use popular tags. My pictures still show up in the tag, but if i use another account and post with the same hashtag it will get tons of likes. Is this because my second account is new or?

  • Josh Lou

    If anyone knows the solution please help.

    Using iPhone 6, could see my own hashtags but then realized that only viewable by me. Using other phone to check the hashtags, my picture is not shown in the search result. That explains the zero likes. Used the other two phones and open new iTunes account plus different IP. Same thing happened. Dead—-
    Using new phone log into old accounts not new, same thing happened.

    Now just reporting the problem everyday and so far no reply or solution yet. Problem continues.

    Also did the whole using Facebook to login thing. Doesn’t work either

    • Maiio

      Same here .. this is really annoying

    • Kay

      Did you ever get a solution to the ban? I’m experiencing the same thing. I don’t think the device is the problem, it’s a shadow ban they place on the account. Please tell me it resolved for you?

  • Laura

    Hashtags are not working at all for the past week!! I’ve uninstalled and installed the app several times at no avail. Nothing fixes the problem, and Instagram just ignores all feedback I’ve reported the problems on a daily basis since the beginning. I won’t be posting anymore until this gets fixed. It’s a waste of time and photos for all of us.

    • Kay

      did it resolve for you? i’m having same issue

      • Laura

        Nothing works!

        • Kay

          Insane! what have you tried? this is so maddening!

        • Kay

          have you tried deactivating account for a few days? I heard it worked for some people, i haven’t tried though.

    • Kay

      Maybe we need to start a petition

  • George Freeman

    I decided to use zen-promo for a long time ago. It helps me in any cases can occur on instagram. That’s why I like it and still use. But I think to quit instagram because it comes to tough.

  • Michiel Vos

    I’m so gutted! I recently picked up Wildlife Photography and in order to not overload my casual friends who follow my personal account with the pictures I take of dolphins etc., I decided to dedicate a second account to my animal pictures, so everyone who is interested in that can just follow the new one. Unfortunately I have the same problem and the pictures on my second account do not show up in any of the hashtag searches, which makes it impossible for me to grow this account. I tried to log in with Facebook but it does not make a difference. People who don’t follow me, do not see my pictures show up when looking for hashtags. I reported to IG, but it seems pretty pointless reading all your comments. I was so excited for this new account, but I’m afraid I might as well delete it.

    • Ursula

      The same happend to me. I opened a new accout and after the 3rd picture NO hashtags showed up at all. Zero likes, zero new people. It’s a food account so no suspicious #. Anything new with your account?? It’s soooo frustrating.

      • Kay

        Same! Looks lie it’s happening even more recently. What’s causing this? Anyone know? Instagram’s shitty customer service ignores everyone, it’s devastating and so unfair! Especially to personal accounts

        • Ursula

          Nothing so far. I’ve reported the problem to instagram after every picture. Still, no hashtags work. Also, I opened a new account with a different device – the same happende ;-(((

  • Kay

    Hi everyone! Has Anyone found any reasonable explanation to this yet? It’s Feb 2017, and my latest picture got shadow banned. I noticed it right away because only my followers were liking my picture. I checked the hashtag and my photo was showing up to me under those hashtags, but when I checked from an account that wasn’t following me, it wasn’t showing up. It’s called a “shadow ban”. Don’t know what could have caused this issue, my account is totally vanilla, I don’t add too many people, or do any shady activity. It happened for no reason. Is this permanent you guys?? That’s seriously devastating. My account is personal so opening a new one isn’t an option for me, I have a lot of history with this account. Please help if you know anything, thanks guys!

    • Jess

      I’ve noticed this recently as well! Whenever I click the hashtags I’ve put underneath my photos, they don’t appear in the hashtag search. I’ve also created my own hashtags as a means to check if my hashtags would be made public, but my own hashtag doesn’t work as well. The only people who can view my posts are those I follow, and my profile is set to public. This is very frustrating.

  • Kay

    I’ve noticed that many instagram pages that should have posts like every 1 minute at least, cuz they have 300k+ postings, the posts are like 5 min apart, very sparse. I think that A LOT of users got shadow banned and don’t know it.

  • pojimo2135

    Hey…before 1 month, i had the same problem. i tried to different methods and it util didn’t work. Finally, i tired to install the old version of ig (around 7.0 ~ 8.0) on a android phone. Then the hastags worked!!!
    But, after some weeks, it didn’t work again…….
    so I suggest you can try different old version of ig.
    But it is not work for me now……….

  • Kay

    You guys! We need to Start a petition!! If anyone knows ANYTHING, please update us here! I find that people either resolve their issue, or give up on it, and never return to forums to update the rest. Please let us know if you found a solution to this monstrosity.