And Yes, Facebook Can Still #Suckit

Crossposted at

Remember this?

Back in the Fall of 2007 many in this community joined the fight against Facebook, more specifically Facebook’s ban on photos of mother’s breastfeeding their children.

We joined the protest group. We contributed to videos. We held a nurse-in. One of the main talking points throughout the campaign was the alleged inconsistencies in Facebook’s Terms of Service. They appeared to allow pro-anorexia groups, and, as many of us pointed out, hate groups.

At the time a few media outlets picked up on the bru-ha-ha. Some notable bloggers joined in. Even TechCrunch had a short piece on the uproar (with, in my opinion, some of the most immature and sexist comments I’ve ever seen against women in one single post- “chicks and their milkbags” comes to mind). And then the ruckus died down.

Until now.

It seems the Facebook TOS issue has reared it’s head in the form of the blogosphere taking note of the allowance of Holocaust Denial groups on the service.

Michael Arrington at TechCrunch writes, “Jew Haters Welcome At Facebook, As Long As They Aren’t Lactating” much to the delight and surprise of some in the mommyblogging community. Ok, much to the delight and surprise of ME.

In fact, I was so shocked by the allegiance I twittered:

“Did the boys just figure out Facebook allows hate groups? the MOMS pointed this out years ago when they wouldn’t allow bfeeding pics. lol”

Which then started a full scale discussion over on this thread at friendfeed.

Karoli ties the entire issue together citing very clearly that Facebook needs lessons in community management,

“Just amazing. It seems that on the Internet, there are still many males (I won’t call them men) who don’t have any respect for women, and have no problem demonstrating it on a daily basis.

This is bully behavior. When women are demeaned for breastfeeding or wanting to promote breastfeeding (which was the original purpose of the group) by men who fail to see the hypocrisy in Facebook’s decision matrix around these two groups, they are being marginalized and bullied. It’s wrong, but I’m not exactly sure what could be done to prevent and/or stop it.

Here’s one idea: Let’s see some of the mature, responsible members of this large universe called the Internet stand up not only against Holocaust deniers, but also for breastfeeding mothers. “

As a breastfeeding mother I want to see Facebook be consistent in the way it implements it’s TOS. As someone disgusted by Holocaust denial groups, and other hate groups, I am appalled they are allowed to remain while photos of me feeding my daughter are removed.

Now that the “other half” of the blogosphere is having this discussion in depth, will we see any movement from Facebook? Will the “tech” bloggers continue to embrace the “mommyblog” causes when it involves a social networking service?

I can’t wait to find out.

Contributing Editor Erin Kotecki Vest also blogs at Queen of Spain blog


  1. I was appalled by this too.

  2. This reminds me of a story my mom told me as a lesson about being married to a man. The door knob to the door we used to get from our house into our garage was broken. For weeks. Maybe months. My step-dad didn’t park in the garage, so he never had to use that doorknob, thus my mom’s requests for hiim to fix the doorknob were largely ignored. (She could still open the door, see, it was just a major PITA.) Until one day when he had to get himself a beer out of the garage refrigerator, and he had to use the broken doorknob. The damn thing was fixed that night. The moral of the story: For many men, sadly, women’s complaints are merely nagging or histrionics and until the issue impacts them in some direct fashion they just write it off as unimportant or exagerrated. I’m glad this issue is getting the attention it deserves, but it’s more than a little sad that it took this long and took this particular issue to make it “important.”

  3. From what I understand, the issues they had were with pictures that showed the nipple, not necessarily breastfeeding in general. But they handled it so poorly. Facebook really needs to hire a new Public Relations team…..

  4. @MrsSoup That is what they said at various points, but there were plenty of pictures that didn’t show any nipple at all that were removed. I included a few of them in my post here:

  5. @Annie WTF? That’s stupid. Liars. They seriously need to get their head in the game.

  6. Facebook has also removed clergy titles from anyone who has say, “Rabbi” or “Reverend” in their name, while allowing teenagers and chauvinists to keep absurd & clearly untrue nicknames (think “Johnny ‘Dickweed’ Doe” and “Joe ‘Ladykilla’ Schmo). So… yeah, Facebook’s priorities are a little mixed up, across the board.

  7. ok thats just wacky

  8. The female body is beautiful, and I do not see any aggression to any person of moral view so beautiful as a gesture to breastfeed, I think that a decision ditatória, the Internet should be free for the good things, and shall prohibit the bad things.

    The female body is beautiful, and I do not see any aggression to any person of moral view so beautiful as a gesture to breastfeed, I think that a decision ditatória, the Internet should be free for the good things, and shall prohibit the bad things.

  9. i personally just dont want to see pictures of babies sucking on breasts on facebook. theres a place for everything, even on the internet. just as u wouldnt stand in the center of a busy intersection breast feeding, why do it in the middle of a busy social network?

  10. Cory I actually would stand in the center of a busy intersection and breast feed.

    And let’s not forget you have to friend me on facebook in order to see it.

  11. Wow. I’m so wrapped up in my own FB bubble, I had absolutely no idea about FaceBook allowing hate/bully groups; the pro-anorexia groups or (as I learned upon further research tonight) failure to act on information from the attorney general about sexual predators on the site. Thanks for making more people aware of this. I’ll be sure to pass it on.

  12. I think it’s great that you support breastfeeding! I lead a local breastfeeding support group even though my kids are older, but I joined the organization when I was still nursing my youngest and became so passionate about it.


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