23 February 2010

Facebook: Still Afraid of Nipples.

So my wife let me know about a group on Facebook called "If breastfeeding offends you, put a blanket over YOUR head!" She mentioned that a number of these group members still see Facebook remove pictures of them breastfeeding.

Everybody loves Facebook. Everybody uses Facebook. And sure, it's useful and fun and spiffy and 400 million people and climbing and all that. But this is an issue I've followed for a while now.

Facebook will tell you that they host thousands of pictures of moms breastfeeding their children, and they're right. And I think it's fair to say they've gotten a little better about this. But apparently someone there still feels that partial nipple exposure in a breastfeeding pic = porn. And that's just stupid.

And again, Facebook continues to host pro-anorexia groups on its network, even though now they try to disguise themselves or insist they're about something else. Yes, Facebook is doing a better job about this, and yes, there are many more "stop pro-ana on Facebook" groups than there were.

But let's be clear - pro-ana groups are harmful and that violates Facebook's Terms of Service. And taking action to prevent people from encouraging breastfeeding - you know, like banning pictures of breastfeeding because they're "dirty" - is also a very bad idea.

Ah, but what's ok to put on Facebook? How about the Big Boobs application and fan page with over 53,000 active users, where you can talk about your favorite porn stars and such? You know, because I'd love my wife to read my Facebook Status, "David Wescott just became a fan of Big Boobs." Of course, there are countless other groups, and pictures, and all sorts of things like that.

So, to sum up, here's the de facto Facebook TOS:
  1. breastfeeding pic = OK
  2. breastfeeding pic that has 1 pixel of nipple = banned, you know, because that's obscene
  3. pro-ana = sorta not OK, but we still tolerate it sometimes
  4. big boobs = totally OK, as long as the nipples are covered.
So PLEASE, Facebook, and whoever keeps objecting to nipples in bf pics - just remember what my wife also reminded me - breastfeeding was good enough for the baby Jesus.


TheFeministBreeder said...

Like it. A lot.

And don't forget about the Facebook Group we're all trying to ban right now called "Good Reasons to Punch a Woman in the Face." DIRECT violation of their TOS, but the group still sits there.


Ann Marie van den Hurk, APR said...

I think it all comes back to the fact breast are sexualized in our culture and are not seen solely as providers of nourishment to babies. They may have dual purposes, but let's not chose one over of the other because it makes certain people uncomfortable.