Instagram, the photo-sharing app that promises a “fast, beautiful” way to exchange images, has enjoyed an enviable reputation as the Eden of social networking sites.

It’s the place where 80 million people share picturesque, gently-tinted photos of bouquets, sunsets, spaghetti and cappuccinos.

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The photo-sharing app puts photos front and center, allows for a degree of anonymity, and encourages public posts that help like-minded strangers find each other.

The product's real-time stream of images and the ease with which it can be accessed on smartphones also ensures that users can connect at all hours of the day.

The explicit images run afoul of Instagram’s terms of service, which prohibit “nude, partially nude, or sexually suggestive photos.” But while Instagram can ban certain activity, it can’t always police it.

The more graphic photos show people masturbating in front of the camera, while others might not look out of place in a Victoria’s Secret catalog.

There are 135,000 photos tagged “latte” and 201,000 tagged “Instasex.” The hashtag “wet” has nearly twice as many images.

Instagram is being used not only as a way to exchange X-rated images, but also a place for sex chat partners to find each other, offering a glimpse at how cybersex has adapted to the social media age.

Via photos, comments and hashtags, many Instagram members are inviting other users to join them for “Kik Sex” on the messaging app Kik, where individuals can chat privately or exchange nude photos. Girls who wanna play post a comment and I’ll kik you,” wrote one Instagram user in a post that included the tags “instaboner,” “instac*ck,” “instahorny,” “instap*ssy,” and “f*ckme.” “Don’t be shy. Hit me up hotties."Instagram’s adult-content alter ego comes as no surprise: the deluge of explicit imagery accompanies nearly every social network’s transition to the mainstream.

More users invariably means more sex, and the top three most popular social media sites in the U. -- Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest – as well as Tumblr, the tenth most popular, have all struggled to crack down on users whose X-rated postings violate their terms of service.

In the past year, Instagram has grown from 10 million users to 80 million.“Instagram has moved from a niche thing to something people have heard about, and that means it has a critical mass.