It’s been an interesting week, people.
I have had just about all I can take from Facebook and their shitty double standards. In the past week, I saw three different photos. Two of them filled me with joy, and one filled me with disgust and rage.
Guess which of these photos were taken down by Facebook for violating their Community Standards?
You got it. The breastfeeding photos. The amazing images of a woman with cancer and one breast, miraculously being able to feed her newborn with her broken body, and then crying with joy. And we get to share that moment with her. A raw and incredible glimpse into what must be a moment of sheer triumph for this new family, after unimaginable suffering. But it’s a breast, and it’s “uncomfortable,” so whichever asshats reported it got the pictures removed, and the photographer’s professional page taken down. Because, standards.
Meanwhile…back at the Hall of Justice…our third photo is floating around the Internet, and the Xanax starts flying. I happen to be in a private women’s Facebook group, and got to see real-time reactions that several rape survivors had to this bad boy, and it wasn’t pretty. Lots of people reported it as offensive. And Facebook got right back to us. “Thanks for flagging this photo beyotches, (I’m paraphrasing.) We went ahead and checked it out. There are no breastfeeding babies (yay!) or boobs of any kind (boo!) so, we’re all kinds of set! Thanks for not going with our competition! Oh wait, we don’t have any! We’re Facebook! HAHAHAHAHA!”
So Fuck You, Facebook. You, who thinks that you are protecting our “Community Standards” by not allowing a beautiful photo of a cancer patient’s naked chest, but this is perfectly OK as a profile pic:
If you’re going to take it upon yourselves to censor your platform, at least make sure there is some consistency in your values. For the record, I don’t believe in censoring for this very reason – it is a slippery slope. And the juxtaposition of these two events this week proves just how messed up your message can get when you try to start sending one. “Women: we don’t care if our Community Standards trigger your rape PTSD. But for Crissake, stop upsetting those who don’t like to look at icky sick people!”
Just remember: Facebook is a business. I know it’s “free” and you don’t have to pay for it like you do your cell phone bill, but they need you and your eyeballs to line their pockets. So, how can we beat them? Force them to change their tyrannical ways? Show them we mean business? It’s simple: take your eyeballs elsewhere. Never forget the power of the boycott. At this point, I use Facebook to show you my blog posts, because not enough people have signed up to receive notification that I have written something new. And, I do like staying connected with people: but we could just as easily be doing that over Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter, etc. Someday soon, a new social media platform will come along to become “the new Facebook,” and the Book of Face will shuffle off to the desolate edge of the Interweb wasteland with MySpace and Google+ (sorry, Google, you tried…) And I, and most of the bloggers that I know, will not be able to run away from it fast enough.
So, Facebook, you have been warned: you.better.step.up.
(In the meantime, please sign up to get email notification so we can still stay in touch!)