compromise at Israeli art school over nude painting

There has been an interesting series of developments around this issue. Take a look at the linked articles on the source as well. 

The head of an Israeli art school has rescinded the resignation he submitted last week following an uproar over censorship of a nude painting of Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked.
Larry Abramson, the art chief at Shenkar College of Engineering, Design and Art, announced his return on Wednesday after a compromise with the college’s president, Yuli Tamir.

Abramson had resigned after advising artist Yam Amrani to either remove the painting from an exhibition or cover Shaked’s face. Amrani opted to cover Shaked’s face with a black X and oval.


“Censoring a painting is clearly a blow to freedom of expression,” he said. “Establishing the council at Shenkar and enshrining its standing in the Shenkar statutes is an action that will prevent arbitrary restrictions of freedom of expression.”

read more: Haaretz

Facebook Censorship: The Battle for Free Speech (Or At Least Equality)

Herein lies the beginnings of a double standard.

Fig 2
Fig 2

It is widely understood that this meme (fig 2) was flagged by FB as it depicts a woman who is partially naked. She was photographed standing next to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (albeit, before he became Canada’s 23rd Prime Minister). This was a newsworthy event and was covered by several media outlets.

But FB banned it, it was flagged as offensive content because it did contain nudity and was reported to FB by one or more users.

Fair enough FB.

Fig 3
Fig 3

But now enter double standard. This next image (fig 3) was taken at a Toronto Pride Parade. With genitalia exposed, this image was never flagged as inappropriate.

Why is a bare breasted woman not okay, but a display of penises is fine?

To clarify, displaying a penis if one is Gay is okay. If a straight male tried that, odds are the police would be knocking on the door; FB jail would be the least of all worries.

Both photos were taken at Pride Parades attended by various politicians and public figures. Both images showcase nudity.

Source: Facebook Censorship: The Battle for Free Speech (Or At Least Equality)

the guardian takes on Facebook nudity policy

When it comes to nudity, Facebook is little different than Victorian England

Facebook is not the only target of activists’ ire. A quick survey at social media companies’ policies shows that most, if not all, ban nudity from their platforms. While some have argued that this is a result of parochial American attitudes toward sex and the human body, companies argue that their policies are about making their platforms a safe space for young people and, in the case of Facebook, a “global and culturally diverse community”.

Although it’s true that Facebook’s user base is diverse, Facebook is not a “community”. It’s a corporation, and its users are its products – but have no say in how the space is regulated.

Here, Facebook is making a distinct choice: rather than enable freedom of expression as the company often claims to do, it is imposing cultural conservatism by claiming that nudity is somehow dangerous. In this, it is little different than Victorian England.

Surprisingly, historical parallels are fundamentally asymmetrical to the current modes of censorship.

Read the full article at The Guardian

Why anti censorship efforts against Facebook won’t work

There is a commercial for car insurance that has three elderly women friends sitting in a living room. One woman talks about not needing to send out postcards from vacation anymore because she can post pictures on her wall. By this she means her actual living room wall. When one of her friends challenges her assumptions she retorts .I unfriend you. ” To which her friend responds “That’s not how this works, that not how any of this works.”

20140316-212822.jpgThat I fear is the problem with the efforts of those in clothes free community who are battling Facebook’s ban on nudity even the non sexual kind. They would like FB to allow some nudity. But thats not how it works, thats not how any of this works.

Read more

Booksellers bare all to protest censorship attempt of ‘Everybody Gets Naked’ children’s book

French booksellers go clothes free to protest censorship

Booksellers bare all to protest censorship attempt of ‘Everybody Gets Naked’ children’s book

Book lovers would rather be stripped of their clothes than their right to read freely.

A group of French booksellers and publishers took off their clothes Wednesday to protest conservative politician Jean-François Copé’s call to censor a children’s book from 2011 called “Everybody Gets Naked” (Tous à Poil), the Local reported.

read more