2000s-era copypasta makes comeback in Instagram's 'Add Yours' templates

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Old internet pastimes have taken on new formats as Instagram makes online chain mail trendy again.

Instagram’s “Add yours” stickers, which enable any user to create an easily resharable story template, have popularized photo-sharing trends reminiscent of 2000s-era email and Facebook chains threatening users to reshare copypasta — (often spammy) copied-and-pasted content — either to avoid negative consequences or to show support for causes.

Since the app enabled user-made templates late last year, said a spokesperson for Meta, Instagram’s parent company, hundreds of millions of “Add yours” templates have been shared globally. The stories prompt others either to respond with their own content or to simply repost pre-written text or premade designs.

Trending stickers often urge users to post something specific — such as photo dumps for the month, baby photos or pictures of their dogs — by claiming they’ll have bad luck if they fail to do so. Other popular templates have also circulated chain mail formats old and new, from copypasta legal statements to artificial intelligence-generated posters such as the viral “All Eyes on Rafah” image, which was reshared more than 47 million times last month.