Used to be social media was about sharing one’s experiences and memories with others through tweets pics and videos that captured those experiences and brought them into the digital sphere. Well get ready for the rising tide of collector accounts in social media. These account don’t share anything about the account holder. Rather they collect and repost stuff (primarily images) from other people. This growing trend is particularly focused on images and videos of naked and partially undressed people.
With names like Get Your Ass in Nature, Bottomless Tour, Nudist Lover, Cheeky Guys, Naked Yoga Nebulae. These accounts social media platforms like Tumblr, Instagram and others invite you to send them your nude pictures so they can promote body freedom and you don’t have to worry about your account being compromised by the censors. The owners of those accounts rarely if ever post images of themselves they only put the images of the naked bodies of others they collect on display.
While every individual has the right to do whatever they want to with their pictures and videos including sharing them with people they don’t know, whose intentions are unclear at best, there is a recent more dangerous trend. Some of these accounts have begun to use nude images in social media without permission of their owners. Now Internet veterans like myself know that once you post something on the internet you lose control of it but this is a disturbing trend for this reason. While some of this is being done manually the utilization of Internet automation like IFTT to automatically capture images from social media based on certain hashtags and repost to them to these collector accounts.
My problem with these collector accounts rise from two areas of concern. The non contextual display of these images belonging to others turns the nude body into a spectacle, something simply to be on display. This is no way helps to normalize nudity and promote clothes free life in my opinion. Secondly the owners of these accounts are using the naked images of others to promote their own agendas and draw visitors to their social media accounts while staying visible and anonymous themselves. This seems to go against the whole point of social media in the first place and definitely reduces privacy and creates greater vulnerability of for certain groups of people who might post their images on the net. Due to the automated nature of the reposts they mix sexual and non sexual mages together because there is no human being discerning what is appropriate. They simply collect images based on the hashtag. One site has an image of an innocent clothes free child playing in the same stream as an “adult star” promoting naked yoga.
So what’s a clothes free body to do. Well if you have any worry about where your clothes free images may end up don’t post them on the Internet. Share your pics with friends using email or your own private blog. Second decide if it is in your best interest to avoid having identifiable featured in your images and videos. That doesn’t mean you have to chop your head of or blur all your images. Be creative with camera angles and the use of filters. Third monitor who follows you on social media and if it works for you make you social media account private. Be sure to let you followers know if you would rather not have them repost your images. Finally I suggest avoid supporting these image collection accounts the more successful they are the more of them will crop up. If your image should be used without permission contact the account owner immediately and ask that it be removed. If you are unable to contact them or they do not respond report to the appropriate social media platoform and request that your image be removed. This may be the action you need to take as more and more of these accounts are automated and not checked by real humans very often.