Photo-sharing app reviews guidelines to control harassment, nudity and pornography

Facebook's acquisition of Instagram has reflected in the apps operations and the reviews of its guidelines since the take over in 2012

Photo-sharing app Instagram

Photo saring app Instagram has revealed new community guidelines designed to reduced harassment and pornography. This will be the biggest change to its guidelines since the social media platform was acquired by Facebook in 2012 and its helps clarify rules that users have described as being too lax, overreaching and enforced with double standards.

In an interview with The Wall Street journal, Instagram postulated the changes as being a tougher, less polite stance:

“In the old guidelines, we would say ‘don’t be mean,’” said Nicky Jackson Colaco, director of public policy for Instagram, which is owned by Facebook. “Now we’re actively saying you can’t harass people. The language is just stronger.”

In the previous gudelines, Instagram asks users to be polite and respectful. The revised version however is much longer and specifies that “serious threats to public and personal safety are not allowed.”

The most useful updates however spell out the details about what can be shared and what won’t be tolerated, like the section on nudity:

“We know that there are times when people might want to share nude images that are artistic or creative in nature, but for a variety of reasons, we don’t allow nudity on Instagram. This includes photos, videos, and some digitally created content that show sexual intercourse, genitals, and close-ups of fully-nude buttocks. It also includes some photos of female nipples, but photos of post-mastectomy scarring and women actively breastfeeding are allowed. Nudity in photos of paintings and sculptures is OK, too.”

The effectiveness of the new guidelines will be tested by how they are enforced, especially now that the app has 300 million monthly unique users.

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