*Why won’t Instagram let curvy women be great? The social media platform recently banned the innocuous word “curvy” in hashtag form because it violated its policies.
According to Buzzfeed, an Instagram spokesperson said the hashtag will no longer be searchable because “it was being used to share images and videos that violated Instagram’s community guidelines around nudity.”
The ban is the latest in a string of attempts to minimize offensive content but still allow users to be expressive.
Model Chrissy Teigen slammed Instagram in June for taking down a topless photo she posted from a W Magazine photo shoot. Rihanna’s account was suspended after she posted a nipple-baring photo from magazine shoot. She briefly deleted her account in protest. Nicki Minaj was also reprimanded for posting her album cover artwork of her derriere in a G-string.
Artist Sam Roddick, who had her Instagram deleted for posting an image of a cornice that resembled a vagina, said,
“They are showing that as a company their philosophy is emotionally and intellectually unhealthy and psychologically damaging towards women. They have banned images of breast feeding, stretch marks, domestic images of menstruation and classical art works that respectfully portray nude women and now they ban the hashtag #curvy.”
Instagram also removed artist Rupi Kaur’s photo of her laying in bed with menstrual blood seeping through her sweat pants. Instagram restored the photo, apologizing for its ‘accidental’ removal, but Kaur didn’t buy it, saying:
“Thank you Instagram for providing me with the exact response my work was created to critique. I will not apologize for not feeding the ego and pride of misogynist society that will have my body in an underwear but not be okay with a small leak. When your pages are filled with countless photos/accounts where women (so many who are underage) are objectified. Pornified. And treated less than human. Thank you.”
Many users, including fashion bloggers and body image activists, have taken to Twitter and Instagram to express outrage over the banning of #curvy. Their disapproval triggered the following hashtags in response: #curvee, #stillcurvy, #bringcurvyback, and #youcanttakemycurves.
You can check out some of the responses here.
— Elízabeth (@fulanafloyd) July 16, 2015