An anonymous Instagram account that has been calling out undocumented workers in Bali and general foreigner misbehavior has been suspended.
@moscow_cabang_bali (which roughly translates to Bali being a chapter or extension of the Russian capital, although they insisted it is just a parody of a character from Netflix’s Money Heist) confirmed the suspension to Coconuts Bali today.
“We suspect it’s because many people reported us,” said the account’s administrator via their backup account, @moscow.cabang.bali.
“One thing’s for sure: we were accused of violating community guidelines.”
The administrator said their case will be reviewed by Instagram in the next 24 hours.
In the meantime, @moscow.cabang.bali has already uploaded posts hours just hours into its existence. The backup account has gained 296 followers as of this article’s publication.
Established in February, the original account described itself as a provider of “free marketing service” to micro, small, and medium enterprises — a sarcastic dig at those making a living in Bali without the proper documents. Many of its posts are screenshots of advertisements by foreigners who appear to be offering illegal commercial services in Bali such as tours, surf lessons and villa rentals.
Before the suspension, the account proved to be popular. having amassed around 34,000 followers with fewer than 400 posts.
In a recent interview with Coconuts Bali, the account’s administrator said they did not specifically target Russians in their crusade. However, many of the reported cases of foreign nationals working here illegally happen to involve Russians.
“I target and post about all nationalities – Ukrainians, Indians, Australians. But unfortunately, the reality is many of those who blatantly promote themselves in Bali are Russians. And from the reports that I receive, the majority of them are about Russians,” the administrator said, asking to remain anonymous.
EXCLUSIVE: Unlikely social media activist @moscow_cabang_bali on illegal workers, personal threats, and the focus on Russians
Foreigners working in Bali without a proper permit is a tale as old as time. But they are once again in the spotlight thanks to one anonymous Instagram account.
3 Mar 2023
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