A commonly held misconception is that Instant Runoff Voting (IRV) allows voters to support their sincere favorite candidates, without the fear of “throwing away their vote” on “spoilers”. This article demonstrates why this is incorrect. At best, IRV mitigates the spoiler effect, which plurality voting is extremely vulnerable to.
There may, however, be some improvement over plurality with IRV to the degree that voters are not tactical. But this improvement is small compared to approval voting.