Bieber deletes Instagram account after spat

Justin Bieber's former girlfriend, singer Selena Gomez (both above), has joined in with comments about the recent postings of Bieber and his alleged girlfriend, model Sofia Richie.
Justin Bieber's former girlfriend, singer Selena Gomez (both above), has joined in with comments about the recent postings of Bieber and his alleged girlfriend, model Sofia Richie. PHOTOS: REUTERS, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

WASHINGTON • Pop star Justin Bieber has deleted his Instagram account, which had nearly 80 million followers, after a public social media fight with his former girlfriend Selena Gomez and a bunch of his own fans.

The fight was apparently about model Sofia Richie, with whom Bieber, 22, is said to be in a relationship. He has been pictured stepping out with the 17-year-old daughter of singer Lionel Richie several times in recent weeks.

On Sunday night, addressing several nasty comments left on photos he posted of the two, Bieber told his fans: "I'm gonna make my Instagram private if you guys don't stop the hate. This is getting out of hand, if you guys are really fans, you wouldn't be so mean to people that I like."

Then Gomez, 24, who used to date Bieber, left a comment of her own: "If you can't handle the hate then stop posting pictures of your girlfriend lol - it should be special between you two only."

Bieber replied: "It's funny to see people that used me for attention and still try to point the finger this way. Sad. All love. I'm not one for anyone receiving hate.

"Hope you all can be kind to my friends and each other. And yes I love my beliebers."

Although Gomez has since said her comments were "selfish and pointless", Bieber appears to be done with Instagram, at least for now.

His account has disappeared. He now uses Facebook and Twitter.

WASHINGTON POST, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 18, 2016, with the headline 'Bieber deletes Instagram account after spat'. Print Edition | Subscribe