Meta, parent company of Facebook and Instagram, will allow users who identify as transgender and non-binary to have photos showing their nipples, as recommended by the company's official oversight board, according to the New York Post.
Meta's oversight board, which CEO Mark Zuckerberg calls the "Supreme Court" of the company, is allowed to make content and moderation decisions and recommend policy changes such as this.
The board recently overturned the flagging of two Instagram posts of users who identify as transgender and non-binary whose content was flagged despite the fact that they covered their nipples.
As well, the board found that overall, Meta's policies on nudity result in "greater barriers to expression for women, trans, and gender non-binary people on its platforms."
"We welcome the board’s decision in this case,” a spokesperson for Meta told the New York Post.
“We had reinstated this content prior to the decision, recognizing that it should not have been taken down,” the spokesperson added.
In a nearly 10,000-word post by the oversight board, an in-depth analysis was given of Meta's policies as to how they unfairly treat those who identify as transgender or non-binary.
Analyzing the platform's community standards, the board notes that the standards refer to a woman's uncovered breasts. Given that the subjects in recent photos identify as non-binary and transgender, "the breasts depicted belong to individuals who do not identify as women" and as such are not subject to the rule.
The rules typically allowed those showing nipples in relation to surgeries or breastfeeding, which the oversight board says "highlight the disproportionate impact ... for people who identify as LGBTQI+."
“We are constantly evaluating our policies to help make our platforms safer for everyone,” the Meta rep said.
“We know more can be done to support the LGBTQ+ community, and that means working with experts and LGBTQ+ advocacy organizations on a range of issues and product improvements," the spokesperson concluded.
The Meta Oversight Board consists of five members who require a majority decision to make a ruling. The board notes that a research team at the University of Gothenburg was commissioned for this decision, relying on a team of 50 social scientists.
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