Breastfeeding on Facebook: Indecent Exposure?


Pictures of drunken, half-naked coeds accidentally flashing a little boob mid keg stand. Fine. Images of new mothers breastfeeding their children, not always OK, at least according to Facebook. As the Times reports, “a mass online protest movement is gathering pace after Facebook banned some breastfeeding photos from the social network site.”

Barry Schnitt, a spokesperson for FB, explains that all breastfeeding images aren’t created equally, and only the ones that violate the terms of agreement are taken down. “Photos containing a fully exposed breast — as defined by showing the nipple or areola — do violate those terms on obscene, pornographic or sexually explicit material and may be removed. The photos we act upon are almost exclusively brought to our attention by other users who complain.”

While more than 80,000 people have joined a protest group called “Hey Facebook, Breast-feeding is not Obscene,” we’d be more interested in seeing the people who narked on these moms for posting images that are “inappropriate.” (We’re guessing they might be from Georgia or Missouri, two states that emphasize “discretion” in their laws regarding public breastfeeding.)

Why don’t they just avoid looking at these women’s photo galleries if they find the content so offensive? Then again, we think this kind of drama might be a side effect of older users joining Facebook as a place to see and be seen — perhaps its time for the company to realize that they’re no longer dealing with a bunch of boozy college kids, and for the 30-somethings who’ve invaded to curb their oversharing tendencies.