It’s pretty funny that the social media platform largely responsible for the term “thirst trap” has a problem with nipples. Bizarre then that Instagram, a place full of horndog delights, seeks to maintain its imaginary moral high ground by drawing the line at nipples – one in particular.
The nipple, which belongs to Penelope Cruz and is set in a pretty unsexualized context, is part of a movie poster promoting Spanish director Pedro Almodovar’s new film “Madres Paralelas” (“Parallel Mothers”). After Instagram’s algorithm deemed the nip slip inappropriate and removed the image, the poster’s designer Javier Jaén complained of censorship.
Take a look:
The complaint, along with thousands of reposts of the image, forced Instagram to realign its thinking in a rare walk-back.
“We initially removed several instances of this image for breaking our rules against nudity. We do, however, make exceptions to allow nudity in certain circumstances, which includes when there’s clear artistic context. We’ve therefore restored posts sharing the Almodóvar movie poster to Instagram, and we’re really sorry for any confusion caused,” the company wrote.
Jaén accepted the apology with a heaping spoonful of sass. “This is probably the first image I saw when I was born,” Jaén said. “A company like Instagram tells me my work is dangerous, that people shouldn’t see it, that it’s pornographic. How many people are they telling that their body is bad, that their body is dangerous?”
He went on to add, “They say their technology can’t differentiate the context. I don’t care. Change your technology then.”
Maybe Jaén is right. Maybe it’s time for Instagram to rewrite its censorship code to finally free the nipple once and for all. Unless it’s a really hairy nipple. In that case, we’ll leave it to Instagram’s perfectly discerning palate.
Photos: James Devaney (Getty Images) and PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU (Getty Images)
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