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Thread: Facebook bans mastectomy pictures

  1. #1
    Gold Member MentalNotes's Avatar
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    Jun 2011

    Default Facebook bans mastectomy pictures

    Facebook 'censorship' of mastectomy photos angers breast cancer awareness advocates

    Revealing photos of men and women displaying mastectomy scars are part of the healing and awareness-raising process for some breast cancer survivors, but the amount of skin on display sometimes triggers Facebook's nudity censors.


    WEDNESDAY, JUNE 5, 2013, 10:50 AM



    A petition on is asking Facebook to stop censoring photos of men and women who have undergone mastectomies.


    A group of petitioners has a message for Facebook: stop taking down our mastectomy photos.

    Revealing pictures of women and men who have had mastectomies are often removed from Facebook by the site's censors, the petition posted on alleges.

    Two of the affected Facebook groups are The SCAR Project, a series by professional photographer David Jay that depicts young breast cancer survivors bearing their mastectomy scars, and Stupid Dumb Breast Cancer, which has posted "survivor portraits" of women's nude bodies covered in paint.

    Facebook censors often remove photos posted on The SCAR Project's page and several times have banned Jay from posting for 30 days, he told the Daily News.

    The SCAR Project, a photo series by David Jay, documents young women and men who have had mastectomies due to breast cancer. Photos posted on Jay's Facebook page have been taken down by the site's censors, Jay said.

    "Women find it very, very supportive to go and look at these pictures," said Jay, who has displayed the works in galleries around the world. Each photograph he posts gets "thousands of beautiful comments to the subjects themselves," he said. "When they remove these photos, the comments go with them."

    The issue is apparently that the photos show breasts and sometimes nipples, which violates Facebook's policy against nudity.

    When Facebook users view content on the site, they have the option to report or mark it as spam, which flags it for review by Facebook employees.

    Scorchy Barrington, 53, created the petition last week after reading a tweet from Jay saying he had been banned from Facebook. So far, it has racked up nearly 9,000 supporters.

    Facebook does not have a ban against mastectomy photos, but does have a policy against nudity that some of the photos may violate, the company said in a statement.

    "Facebook says these photos violate their policy - essentially putting these images in the same category as pornography," the petition states. "The Scar Project, Stupid Dumb Breast Cancer and other pages like them do not objectify or sexualize the human anatomy. They document the physical and emotional toll of women and men who have undergone mastectomies. They raise awareness of the disease and reinforce the need for early intervention and research toward a cure."

    In response, Facebook issued a statement, saying it has "long allowed mastectomy photos to be shared on Facebook, as well as educational and scientific photos of the human body and photos of women breastfeeding."

    "We only review or remove photos after they have been reported to us by people who see the images in their News Feeds or otherwise discover them," it also said.

    "On occasion, we may remove a photo showing mastectomy scarring either by mistake, as our teams review millions of pieces of content daily, or because a photo has violated our terms for other reasons. As a reminder, our terms stipulate that we generally do not allow nudity, with some exceptions as laid out here."

    Censoring the photos is 'essentially putting them in the same category as pornography,' writes Scorchy Barrington in a petition created on

    The site "review(s) millions of pieces of photos and content, we are also doing our best to make the right and best decisions as they pertain to photos," the statement concluded.

    The social networking site has come under fire in the past for taking down photos of women breastfeeding, to which it has said "photos that show a fully exposed breast where the child is not actively engaged in nursing do violate Facebook’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities."

    Facebook representatives also met with Barrington, Jay and representatives in a conference call Tuesday.

    Barrington, who has Stage IV breast cancer, said she was encouraged by the company's response, but still fears there might be misunderstanding among Facebook censors and the general public about what the mastectomy photos aim to portray.

    "We are concerned that it all comes down to breasts and nipples," she told the Daily News. "When you see a breast and nipple and there is a scar, you're seeing a mastectomy photo."

    Read more: Facebook 'censorship' of mastectomy photos*angers breast cancer awareness advocates - NY Daily News
    Last edited by MentalNotes; June 10th, 2013 at 01:30 PM.
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  2. #2
    Gold Member MentalNotes's Avatar
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    FB should be ashamed of themselves, this is cathartic and very courageous of these people to post these intimate pictures of themselves. These pictures really helps others to see that they are not alone and that there is life after a mastectomy.
    darksithbunny likes this.
    "Boredom's not a burden
    Anyone should bear."
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  3. #3
    Elite Member Novice's Avatar
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    Beyond Caring, then hang a left.


    Facebook have long been arsehole, now they are stock-earning arseholes....
    Free Charmed.

  4. #4
    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    and helping Big Brother spy on us arseholes too.
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  5. #5
    Elite Member Sleuth's Avatar
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    What a crock of shit.. I know of quite a few extremely graphic porno pages (including teen nude selfies) on Facebook. I guarantee that if I reported it nothing would happen. Show them a baby breastfeeding or mastectomy scar and they freak out. Idjits.
    Novice likes this.
    Alicia Silverstone: "I think that the film Clueless was very deep. I think it was deep in the way that it was very light. I think lightness has to come from a very deep place if it's true lightness."

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