One of many double standards oddities of Instagram is that it doesn’t allow nipples, but only if they’re female. Not even a famous movie director like Pedro Almodóvar can’t post a female nipple on the platform. After sharing a poster for his new movie Parallel Mothers, the director had it removed “because it violated Instagram’s nudity standards.” But did it really?
Last week, Instagram introduced the new “Sensitive content control” feature within the app. It lets users choose how much sensitive content they want to see – all, some, or almost none of it. This means that some people you may want to reach will not be able to discover your work in Explore, and some creators have already complained about it.
Bartram Trail High School in St. Johns County, Florida recently came under fire for photoshopping girls’ bodies in yearbook photos. After their yearbook was published, 80 female students reported that their photos were altered to remove any hint of cleavage. The students and their parents got furious, and so did the public.
Back in June, Instagram censored an image of a Black, plus-size model Nyome Nicholas – Williams holding an arm across her breasts. This caused a lot of controversies and even started a movement and a petition for Instagram to “stop censoring fat black women.” And they did. After the whole controversy and Nyome’s campaign, Instagram has changed its nudity policy.
No matter how hard some influencers try to debunk the myth of “the perfect body,” there will always be those who promote it. Heck, even Instagram itself seems to prefer skinny, model-like women over us regular gals. The platform recently banned users from sharing Celeste Barber‘s semi-nude parody photo. It wouldn’t be a problem if the original image of a model Candice Swanepoel weren’t left untouched. After the scandal, Instagram quickly came under fire for “fat-shaming” and “double standards.”
Yes, folks, you read that right. Facebook banned a photo of onions posted to the Facebook page of Canada-based seed company, Gaze Seed Company for being “overtly sexual”. The company used the image in a Facebook ad in order to sell Walla Walla sweet onion seeds on the platform when they were told that the image went against their advertising policies.
The image used in the ad is of the seed packaging and shows a handful of the company’s onions in a wicker basket, which the Facebook says were positioned in a “sexually suggestive manner”. According to Gaze Seed Company, however, the controversy has brought them more sales than the ad ever would have on its own.
A few months ago, the Chinese government reportedly required Shutterstock to start censoring some topics for China-based users. Some Shutterstock employees disagreed, claiming that “blacklisting” search terms wasn’t in accordance with the right of free speech. But one of the executives responded to it by basically telling them to go and work somewhere else.
Sony World Photography Awards (SWPA) recently announced finalists and shortlists of its annual contest. However, some images of Hong Kong protests have been removed due to their alleged “sensitive nature.” This has caused a backlash in the community, accusing competition organizers of censorship.
Facebook has gone under fire a few times so far for censoring “nude” images that are artistic, iconic, or merely show nude statues. And after Facebook censored the famous Nik Ut’s photo “Napalm Girl,” it looks like YouTube followed the same footsteps. Martin Kaninsky of All About Street Photography recently uploaded a video that tells the story behind this iconic photo. However, it was soon flagged for violating YouTube’s Child Safety Policy.
An Iranian music streaming website Melovaz recently came under fire for removing images of women from album covers. World-famous artists like Beyoncé, Taylor Swift, and Lana Del Ray were removed from the artwork of their own albums. What’s more, if the album covers featured men – these men were left intact, while the women were photoshopped out.