Meta’s oversight board calls on tech giant to institute more inclusive nudity rules


Meta’s oversight board on Tuesday overturned the company’s decision to remove two social media posts depicting transgender and non-binary people with bare chests. 

The board found that removing the posts was not in line with the company’s community standards, values or human rights responsibilities. 

In addition, it said Meta’s policies on adult nudity result in greater barriers to expression for women and trans and gender non-binary people on its platforms.  

Considering two cases together for the first time, the board said in a release it recommended Meta change its rules on adult nudity and sexual activity so that they are governed by international human rights standards.  

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Meta’s Adult Nudity and Sexual Activity policy prohibits images containing female nipples other than in specified circumstances, such as medical and health contexts. The board said the policy is based on a “binary view of gender and a distinction between male and female bodies.”

“Such an approach makes it unclear how the rules apply to intersex, non-binary and transgender people and requires reviewers to make rapid and subjective assessments of sex and gender,” it said. 

Visitors walk in front of the Meta (Facebook) sign at its headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif., Dec. 29, 2022. 
(Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Its decision and recommendations were made to ensure that all users are treated without discrimination on the basis of sex or gender. 

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This includes defining clear, rights-respecting criteria to govern the aforementioned policy as well as providing more detail on criteria that lead to content being removed in the public-facing Sexual Solicitation Community Standard and revising guidance for moderators to more accurately reflect the public rules on the policy. 

“This would help to reduce enforcement errors on Meta’s part,” it said.

Facebook, WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram icons displayed on a phone screen are seen in this illustration photo taken in Krakow, Poland, April 6, 2022. 

Facebook, WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram icons displayed on a phone screen are seen in this illustration photo taken in Krakow, Poland, April 6, 2022. 
(Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

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“We welcome the board’s decision in this case. We had reinstated this content prior to the decision, recognizing that it should not have been taken down,” a Meta spokesperson told Fox News Digital in an emailed statement Wednesday. 

“We are constantly evaluating our policies to help make our platforms safer for everyone. 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.”

Meta is required to publicly respond to the board’s recommended policy guidance within 60 days.   



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