After recent public outcry from women’s rights activists, social media platform Instagram updated its community guidelines on Thursday, using clearer, more specific language regarding what kinds of images are allowed on the application.
Until now, Instagram’s guidelines were slightly vague, using language like “keep your clothes on,” and “be respectful.” The new guidelines read as such:
“We know that there are times when people might want to share nude images that are artistic or creative in nature, but for a variety of reasons, we don’t allow nudity on Instagram. This includes photos, videos, and some digitally-created content that show sexual intercourse, genitals, and close-ups of fully-nude buttocks. It also includes some photos of female nipples, but photos of post-mastectomy scarring and women actively breastfeeding are allowed. Nudity in photos of paintings and sculptures is OK, too.”
And on the subject of harassment:
“We want to foster a positive, diverse community. We remove content that contains credible threats or hate speech, content that targets private individuals to degrade or shame them, personal information meant to blackmail or harass someone, and repeated unwanted messages.”
These clarified guidelines seem to come in the wake of a series of feminist critiques of the site’s seemingly doubt-standard: acceptance of partial male nudity but not similar images of women, as well as its practice of removing images depicting women breastfeeding, without express nudity.
Instagram did not address these critiques directly. However, Nicky Jackson Colaco, Instagram’s director of public policy, rhetorically questioned the Wall Street Journal, “How do we establish a baseline around nudity when you have hundreds of millions of users? We need to create a standard that most people can live by.”