Among social media networks today, both Facebook and Instagram actively police and inhibit nudity on their respective platforms. Under current standards, users cannot post their nude bodies even for artistic purposes. However, because of a controversy with Black influencers, Facebook and Instagram are relaxing their nudity policy.
Back in August, Nyome Nicholas-William, a Black plus-sized model, posted an artistic photo of herself nude but covering her breasts with her arms. The photo promoted Nicholas-Williams’s self-love and celebration of her own body.
Spotting a potential infringement over their policy, Instagram moderators censored the photo and threatened to take down Nicholas-Williams’s account. The moderation resulted in heavy controversy from the influencer and her supporters, decrying selective censorship. Despite the moderation, white, skinnier models posted even more revealing shots of themselves without repercussions, they argued.
Now, because of the protest, Facebook and Instagram are changing their nudity policy starting this week (via The Guardian). The new policy will ease up on restrictions on breast squeezing, as depicted in Nicholas-Williams’s censored shoot.
At the time of the censoring, breast squeezing was regulated because “it can be most commonly associated with pornography,” according to Instagram. The platform enforces a stringent policy against nudity to reportedly protect users under the age of 13.
However, upon further reviewing today, Instagram admits the wrongful application of the ruling on the self-love shoot. Now, under the new policy, users can now post similar poses for artistic purposes. The company hopes that the new policy will ensure fair ruling across the platform regardless of race or body size.
X, formerly Twitter, will become a subscription-based platform?
Elon is considering it
X, the social networking platform formerly known as Twitter, continues to dig a hole for itself as its now owner Elon Musk suggests charging every user of the platform.
The idea came about during a livestream roundtable hosted on the X account of Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Musk mentioned this is to curb the number of bots on the platform.
“A bot costs a fraction of a penny,” said Musk. “But if somebody even has to pay a few dollars or something, some minor amount, the effective cost to bots is very high,” he added.
If it does push through, Musk said the cost won’t be as high as X Premium — the current paid tier that already exists on the platform.
X Premium affords subscribers features like longer posts, the ability to edit posts, revenue sharing, and more.
Threads now has a web version
Available to most users now
The initial rush of Threads users proved that people were clamoring for an alternative to Twitter, now called X. However, the barebones app at the time caused the userbase to drop drastically over the next few weeks since launch. Now, Meta is slowly building its way back up. The next stop in its bounce back tour is a web version rolling out now.
Formerly, going to threads.net launched a landing page where users can download the mobile app. Now, the website will open a web version of the platform. However, as with Instagram, the web version looks exactly like the mobile app but on a browser page. For a change, though, the navigation buttons are on the top of the page, rather than on the bottom.
In terms of functionality, the web version offers the basic functionalities you’d expect from the platform. Users can like, comment, and repost straight from the browser. Likewise, users can also start threads from the version.
If you’re still using the platform, the web version of the platform is a good development. Instead of just relying on your phone, you can now use your PCs or laptops to post new threads. That said, it will likely take some more finagling for Threads to regain the userbase it enjoyed in its first week.
X glitch misplaces most photos from 2014 and beyond
Only a few were restored
Archiving social media is a real problem today. Because most of public discourse happens through social media platforms, a single break in infrastructure can easily wipe out entire conversations and milestones in the modern era. Over the weekend, that exact scenario happened. A glitch on X reportedly erased most images and links from 2014 and beyond.
As spotted by Tom Coates on the platform, images from before December 2014 disappeared from the site. Likewise, links from the same period are also broken and lead nowhere. Among those that disappeared, one of the most notorious losses was a photo taken by Ellen DeGeneres at the Oscars — a tweet that garnered an enormous amount of retweets at the time.
More vandalism from @elonmusk. Twitter has now removed all media posted before 2014. Thats – so far – almost a decade of pictures and videos from the early 2000s removed from the service.
For example, here’s a search of my media tweets from before 2014. https://t.co/FU6K34oqmA
— Tom Coates (@tomcoates) August 19, 2023
X has not publicly commented on the supposed glitch. However, after the deletion was noticed, the platform restored the iconic Ellen DeGeneres photo to its full glory. It’s not a complete restoration, though. A lot of content are still missing.
The single photo’s restoration suggests that the content wasn’t outright deleted but rather misplaced. As some have pointed out, a few instances are still directly available from the servers. Users have also speculated that the glitch was intentionally done to free up valuable server space.
Regardless, the glitch — intentional or accidental — opens up an important issue on how the world can archive content on social media platforms. Despite how inane our conversations can be from day to day, losing a section of social media also means losing entire swaths of public discourse to the ether.
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