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27 May 2016 00:00
Facebook had to confront the topical issue of body-shaming and ad censorship when they were taken to task for banning an image of a plus-sized woman.
Facebook has had to backtrack after it banned an Australian advertisement featuring a bikini-clad plus-sized model, saying the photo’s depiction was “undesirable”.
The social media giant had blocked the ad for Melbourne’s Cherchez La Femme: Feminism and Fat gathering, saying the image violated its advertising guidelines.
When organisers questioned the decision, the Facebook advertising team said “the image depicts a body or body parts in an undesirable manner”.
“Ads like these are not allowed since they make viewers feel bad about themselves,” said the letter to organiser Jessamy Gleeson, who said she was stunned that Facebook “seemingly has no idea that plus-sized, self-describing fat women can feel great about themselves”.
She urged followers to “rage hard at anyone who tries to tell us that some bodies are more ‘desirable’ than others”.
“Facebook has ignored the fact that our event is going to be discussing body positivity (which comes in all shapes and sizes, but in the particular case of our event, fat bodies),” she wrote.
Facebook “has instead come to the conclusion that we’ve set out to make women feel bad about themselves by posting an image of a wonderful plus-sized woman.”
Gleeson said Facebook later apologised for its actions, admitting it had incorrectly reviewed the advert.
“Our policies are in place to help protect the community from offensive ads that can damage their experience on our platform,” it said in a screenshot Gleeson posted on Twitter.
“This is not the case here and I’m sorry for our incorrect review. We evaluate millions of ads per week and there are instances that we incorrectly disapprove an image that does not violate our policies.” — AFP
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