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Facebook, nipples and inappropriate photo sharing...
Mon, 7th Jul 2014
FYI, this story is more than a year old

I read an article the other day blasting Instagram for removing someone’s profile because of a picture they put up of their toddler innocently lifting up her dress to check out her new undies, a big step in her toilet training progress.

The user was warned by the site about posting inappropriate content, but not being able to recognise sexual tones in her children's photos fast enough, she had her account deleted before she could resolve it.

Photography sharing sites like Instagram and Facebook are notoriously rigid about content and are frequently prudish about flesh.

For instance, Facebook only just lifted its long held ban on the appearance of female nipple in breastfeeding photos.

While more and more people are getting up in arms about these innocent photos being removed from online sites, I tend to agree that they shouldn’t be up there.

Personally I don’t understand the need to show the world your nips on Instagram or Facebook, and I think it is completely stupid to put photos of your kids in the bath on the internet.

While you may think these kinds of photos are appropriate, you’re essentially posting them into an ocean of predators.

It is all well and good not to live in a state of fear and to post what you want to post, I mean good on you, but surely people can understand why photos of their naked kids or their boobies are just waiting to be saved to the desktop.

Of course, you should be allowed to post as many images of your body as you like without the fear of those images being used for unsavoury purposes, but we all know there is a huge risk involved if you do, as you have no way of knowing what happens to your photos once they are posted online.

Juggling the size of the risk with its intrusion in our lives is difficult when it comes to the terror that exists around those creepy predators.

It’s a lot easier for us to believe that all it takes is fewer parents posting naked toddler photos on Instagram for this problem to go away. Unforunately, that's absurd.

Inevitably, this topic always sparks off a fresh wave of criticism against mothers who put their mothering all over the internet. I get absolutely sick of my friends posting everything and anything to do with their kids online.

I mean, how many goddamn cupcakes can you make in a week? But this says far more about me than them, and they should be free to post whatever they like, as often as they like.

While there is criticism against those who post photos of themselves breastfeeding or of their kid lifting up her dress, there is also an equal amount of support for it at the same time.

Because the other aspect to this is what it says about our attitudes towards nudity. One might ask why nakedness, even a child's nakedness, is so readily interpreted as sexual. As I said, it says more about the person complaining, than the person posting.

So while I myself don't imagine I will feel the need to share naked pictures of my kids online, and I don't understand what is so amazing about breastfeeding that it needs to be shared online ("hey look I'm feeding my kid! How many likes will I get?!" I mean what?), it blows that these innocent things are being removed.

But, is it in people's best interests for these images to be taken down, or are the powers at be just scared of the nip?