Meta (Facebook, Instagram) is again called upon to revise its rules on nudity, in particular the one that prohibits women from showing their bare breasts, and harms the ability of women and transgender or non-binary people to express themselves, according to the group’s supervisory board.
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“We ask Meta to look into this issue. We say there should be more equality. Interestingly, the only nipples that are not sexualized are those of men or those that have undergone surgery,” Helle Thorning-Schmidt, former prime minister of Denmark and a member of Meta’s supervisory board, said Thursday during a online conference on Instagram.
The social media giant’s “Supreme Court” recently ruled that Meta shouldn’t have taken down photos posted by a couple showing their breasts, with nipples covered.
The legend mentioned the health of transgender people and explained that one of the two people was soon to be operated on as part of sex reassignment surgery (removal of the breasts). The couple were raising funds to help them finance the intervention.
“The removal of these images is not consistent with Meta’s values or its human rights responsibilities,” the oversight board said Tuesday.
“The company’s adult nudity policy more strongly restricts women, transgender and non-binary people from expressing themselves on its platforms,” the board added.
The oversight board is made up of 20 international members, journalists, lawyers, human rights defenders and former political leaders. It was created in 2020 on the proposal of boss Mark Zuckerberg and is responsible for evaluating the Californian group’s content moderation policy.
Meta rules prohibit images containing female nipples, except in certain health contexts, such as breastfeeding or gender reassignment surgeries.
“This regulation is based on a binary vision of gender,” notes the council. “This involves moderators quickly and subjectively determining sex and gender, which is unrealistic on a large scale.”
He therefore recommends that Meta’s management define “clear, objective and human rights-respecting criteria for people to be treated without sex or gender discrimination, in accordance with international human rights standards”.
Instagram is regularly accused of prudishness and lack of objectivity by its users.
“Release these beauties,” model Helena Christensen wrote Thursday in commentary to a parody video of comedian Celeste Barber shaking those pixelated bare breasts.
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