UPDATED: Facebook Bans Mother Over Photos of Baby With Rare Birth Defect
Update, May 21, 3:20pm EST. Facebook has admitted that it made an error in deleting the photos of Grayson Walker, who was born with a rare birth defect.
Facebook has done it again and I don’t mean buying up start-ups to enhance its profile of mobile offerings, facing lawsuits about infringements or privacy or added X million more users on its way to total internet domination. In April, Facebook told a mother to remove photos of her 7-year-old son, Cole, who has Down Syndrome. Then, earlier this year, Facebook banned another mother for posting photos of her newborn son Grayson, who was born with anencephaly, a rare neural tube defect that results in a baby being born without parts of his brain and skull.
As reported by Fox News, Grayson James Walker was born on February 15 in Memphis, Tennessee, and lived for only eight hours. His parents, Heather and Patrick Walker, had known when he was 18 weeks old that he would not live long and had chosen to carry the baby to full term, says the Daily Mail. With the help of a non-profit organization, Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep, they had a professional photographer take photos of Grayson as they “wanted to capture his short life so his memory could live on forever.”
Heather Walker uploaded the photos to Facebook to share with family and friends and then, as she told Fox News:
Not long after, Facebook deleted them because of the content. They allow people to post almost nude pictures of themselves, profanity, and so many other things but I’m not allowed to share a picture of God’s beautiful creation.
Walker attempt to repost the photos and asked her friends and family to contact Facebook, after which she was banned from the social media site, notes Gizmodo.
According to its community standards page, Facebook considers the following nine types of content objectionable and reserves the right to remove such: Violence and Threats, Self-Harm, Bullying and Harassment, Hate Speech, Graphic Violence, Nudity and Pornography, Identity and Privacy, Intellectual Property and Phishing and Spam.
Photos of a newborn fall under one of categories?
Given the uproar after Facebook flagged photos of 7-year-old Cole and told his mother, Diana Cornwell, that she had “violated” its policies, you would have hoped that Facebook would have learned that photos of children with disabilities do not fall under the category of “objectionable” content. In point of fact, parents of children with disabilities like Heather Cornwell, Heather Walker and myself rely heavily on social media sites and the internet to stay in contact with family and friends and to spread the word that our kids, while different, are beautiful, do amazing things and make our lives and the world richer and simply better.
Now that Facebook is a publicly traded company, all eyes are truly on it — and more than a few of us are finding much that we really “unlike.”
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Photo by Markus Reinhardt