‘Community Standards’ and Online Harassment
Working Title: Seen and Not Heard/Shut Up and Smile
This was legit the result of my clumsy fingers which resulted in a collage of images made by my smartphone.
I thought it could actually be used as a basis to explore the concept Internet censorship, ‘community standards’ and the questionable biases which private companies enforce to outline and enforce what is appropriate for publication of their platform, particularly with regards to gender equality issues. Further, the agency and ownership of user content by private companies like Instagram, mean that when they shut down an account, that user is effectively silenced; there’s no method of reply or rebuttal (on that platform at least).
Rihanna is one social media celebrity whose account was shut down in 2014 due to topless and bottomless photos of her from an Italian magazine shoot. She is also a proponent of the #freethenipple movement, named after Lina Esco’s 2014 film of the same name, which campaigns to affect change in US censorship laws regarding the criminalisation of women’s bodies.
A more recent and local example is Clementine Ford’s Facebook account being suspended earlier this year, which created a public discussion about the double standards women endure online and the silencing effect of Facebook’s ‘community standards’ which, as Ms Ford explains:
[Make it] okay for men to call me a “diseased whore” who “needs 6 inches up you” and a “broomstick shoved in your pisshole,” but not okay to tell a pest to fuck off.
Maybe this could be the beginning of a collage exploring these issues? In the standard square dimensions of an insta post of course.