Connect
To Top

Lactivists vs. Facebook Content Policies

Lactivists
Over the holidays a friend of mine told me about an interesting development with Facebook who recently angered a lot of online moms who are ‘lactivists’ or breast-feeding advocates. They are angry over Facebook deleting photos of breast-feeding moms as obscene content. The mom’s have formed a group called “Hey Facebook, Breastfeeding Is Not Obscene” which currently has about 11,000 members. In a community of 50.5 million that number doesn’t seem very large but neither was the number of Twittering moms that caused Johnson & Johnson to change its Motrin ads after its mom-focused ad offended them. Facebook will probably be less easily swayed as it quickly points to it’s terms of service which state that pictures exposing a full breast will be taken down. Facebook isn’t saying photos of women breast feeding won’t be allowed on their site but they are saying any pictures that expose the full breast will be taken down whether they involve breast feeding or anything else with no filter for context or sexuality applied.

To be fair I can see both sides of the issue on that but in this case the bottom line is that as much as we would like it to be, our Facebook page and it’s content isn’t really yours. It is subject to the rules of the Facebook site and like any community anything that is against the rules isn’t allowed to be in that community. It happens all the time in other publications and while I was researching some numbers for this entry I found a story where the St. Petersburg Times wrote about the protest and how the mom’s had been wronged by Facebook. Facebook then did something interesting to make their point and called the paper’s advertising department and asked whether an ad could be placed related to breast-feeding that showed a woman with her breast fully exposed. It was told the ad would need to be reviewed and that such an image would not generally be allowed in the paper.

This is the second time this year Facebook has found it’s way to into my blog as the source of controversy and I am trying to find the logic between this issue and the jaw dropping hate speech I found on the application Pieces of Flair during the presidential campaign. I know online communities have to have rules because you can’t assume everyone is going to play nice all the time and part of creating a community is creating the rules that govern it. All of that being said what I struggle with more than anything is where and when Facebook draws that line on where they are going to step in. What is the logic that says a bare breast in a photo of a mother and child is so offensive it has to be removed immediately but imagery of Obama as a monkey or McCain as a Nazi and the hate speech that goes with it is perfectly fine. I know the Facebook answer will be that Pieces of Flair was developed by someone else so it isn’t subject to the same rules. I think that is crap because if you are going to go down the slippery slope and make those kind of decision on what is acceptable then you better be ready to enforce it across the board. You should realize that if it lives in your community in any form then it is part of your community and you should have enough spine to stand for those beliefs all the time.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

More in Digital culture

Creative Director, Designer, Brand Builder, Speaker, Podcaster, Crazy One. As a designer, I have 20+ years experience creating the strategy, concepts, and designs for award-winning integrated global advertising campaigns, building multiple global Fortune 500 brands and creating innovative digital experiences. As a leader, I have 15+ years transforming agency and client-side teams using a mix of creativity, business strategy, process and political skill to create innovative, world-class work and cultures that change industries and companies. My clients have included American Airlines, W Hotels, Disney, Citi, ExxonMobil, Acura, Old Navy, Nationwide Insurance, Verizon, Subaru and many others. My work has received over 150 international awards, my app designs have been named as one of the World’s 100 Greatest Apps, Apple has featured my work in 9 keynotes, 4 TV commercials and more.

Follow Me On Instagram

 @visionaireworld X @louisvuitton from back in the day when Kidrobot actually made art toys #louisvuitton #lv #kidrobot #visionaire #visionaireworld #monogram #louisvuittonmonogram #murakami #takashimurakami  Got a vintage @huckgee Skullleader as a new addition to the collection #urbanvinyl #huckgee #mech #robotech #robot  @thechiclibrary in full effect at New York Fashion week for the photographers tonight in @ika_editions @blackscale and @tomford #nyfw #newyorkfashionweek  Forgot to mention I got to see @huckgee new Skullhead mech work in progress which I think is one of the best pieces he has ever done. I already put in dibs on at least one. #huckgee #huckgeeskullhead #urbanvinyl  All work and no play make Steve a dull boy so loved the chance to grab some time to catching up with @huckgee at his studio today #huckgee #huckgeeskullhead #urbanvinyl
 Spent the morning with @the_chris_buck new book Uneasy which is a fantastic look at the work of one of the most creative people I know. Get your copy at chrisbuckuneasy.com #chrisbuck #photography #photographer #portraitphotography #portrait #portraits  Some days I feel like I should wear this @huckgee armor to work. #huckgee #urbanvinyl #mech #armor #toy #kidrobot #dunny  If you listen to The #CrazyOne podcast you have @lukewessman to thank for it. He gave me the push to finally launch it and it was one of the best decisions I've ever made. He is a constant inspiration, someone who makes me want to be a better man and I always feel lucky to count him as one of my friends. Thanks for the support brother. #crazyones #lukewessman #tattooartist #lag #crazyone  @nychos under scaffolding in Haight Ashbury #streetart #streetartist #nychos #streetartofficial #streetartsf  Thanks to @adobe and Bryan Lamkin for having me speak at #adobetechsummit this morning about creativity, leadership and Design Thinking! #adobe #adobetechsummit2017
 FYI - it's pronounced 'art' not 'toy'. These @huckgee pieces are hand made and can take up to a year to produce. #huckgee #robotech #mech #robot #urbanvinyl  Happy Valentines Day to @thechiclibrary - love of my life fierce and true. #chic #nyfw #fashion #love  Because of Snowmaggeddon in NYC I'm having to do my meetings from home today and apparently everyone thinks they are a Creative Director in this house. #pug #pugsofinstagram #design #creativedirector #puglife #designer #dogismycopilot  @huckgee amazing work in progress #urbanvinyl #huckgeeskullhead #huckgee  I'll never get tired of coming here. Like a kid on Xmas morning every time. #apple #infiniteloop

Copyright © 2015 Stephen Gates