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Revealed: Facebook’s photo guidelines

Last Updated: Thursday, February 23, 2012 - 18:06

London: A leaked document has revealed Facebook’s secret rule book which includes blocking mild nudity but allowing images of death and disfigurement, as well as racially charged comments.

According to the document, “naked private parts including female nipple bulges and naked butt cracks” are banned, but “male nipples are OK”.

The guide also revealed that cartoon nudity is also a no no. Any “obvious” sexual activity understandably can’t be uploaded but pictures of “foreplay like kissing and groping are allowed”.

“Crushed heads, limbs, etc, are OK as long as no insides are showing,” the Sun quoted the guide as saying.

“Deep flesh wounds and excessive blood OK to show,” it said,

Facebook, which was created by entrepreneur Mark Zuckerberg and is now worth an estimated 65 billion pounds, is less relaxed about drunken antics.

The document outlaws “images of drunk and unconscious people or sleeping people with things drawn on their faces”.

Pixilated nudity and “mothers breast feeding without clothes on” are also banned. This caused uproar from a host of aggrieved “lactivists” who are already angry with the social networking site.

Fed-up mums protested outside the firm’s offices around the world recently when the site removed snaps of them breast feeding.

Users can also post images of cannabis on their account so long as they are not selling it.

Other pictures to face the cull include genital areas, described as “blatant depiction of camel toes and moose knuckles”, “any photoshopped images of people, whether negative, positive or neutral” and maps of Kurdistan, which is a part of Turkey.

As well as ear wax, other bodily fluids prohibited by Facebook include urine, vomit and pus. However, photos of “snot” are allowed.

The website’s 845 million users were previously in the dark over picture regulation. But Facebook’s vetting system has been made public after a disgruntled ex-employee leaked the company’s Abuse Standards Violations (ASV) document.

The manual was used by outsourcing firm oDesk, whose workers trawl through photos on Facebook then delete them if they go against the ASV.

It is not the first time that Facebook’s guidelines have caused controversy.

Last year the site deleted a drawing of a naked woman by art student Steven Assael. This caused a furore in the art world.

Last April the site removed an image of a gay kiss screened on BBC1 soap EastEnders. This prompted accusations of homophobia.


First Published: Thursday, February 23, 2012 - 18:06
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