In the most comprehensive change to its community guidelines since it was bought by Facebook in 2012 for $1 billion, Instagram has declared that it will be much more strict when it comes to nudity, porn and harassment.
“It’s never OK to encourage violence or attack anyone based on their race, ethnicity, national origin, sex, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religious affiliation, disabilities, or diseases,” says one of the social network’s revised rules. “When hate speech is being shared to challenge it or to raise awareness, we may allow it. In those instances, we ask that you express your intent clearly.”
In an interview with The Wall Street Journal‘s Digits blog, Nicky Jackson Colaco, Instagram’s director of public policy, characterized the changes by saying, “In the old guidelines, we would say ‘don’t be mean’. Now we’re actively saying you can’t harass people. The language is just stronger.”
As mentioned before, the social network also doubled down on its ban on female nudity. This comes after individuals like Scout Willis used the hashtag #FreeTheNipple to protest Instagram’s strict nudity rules.
“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,” says Instagram. “This includes photos, videos, and some digitally-created content that show sexual intercourse, genitals, and close-ups of fully-nude buttocks.”
Also not cool according to the new rules are female nipples, but photos of male nipples, photos of breastfeeding and post-mastectomy scarring are okay.
Colaco tried to address the nudity issue by saying, “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.”
Instagram does not currently screen images that are uploaded to its service; instead, the social network address complaints on a case on by case basis, which has become a challenge as the service has grown to welcome 300 million visitors each month.
The entirety of Instagram’s guidelines can be found on its site.