Pinterest Pro-Anorexia Community Uses Boards to Spread “Thinspiration”
Fashion and models are often to blame for many women’s desire to be unnaturally thin.
Take for example Romanian fashion model Ioana Spangenberg whose 20-inch waist on her 84 pound frame has recently gotten a great deal of attention, especially from the pro-ana (pro-anorexia) community.
The images of Spangeberg’s extreme hourglass frame are shocking and I wouldn’t be surprised if you could find them among the myriad of images on Pinterest, the latest social media craze.
The site has found its own pro-ana community with many users using their boards to promote “thinspiration” or “thinspo,” that is, images of skinny women that serve as inspiration for those who view them, hence “thinspiration.”
Pinterest’s appeal for many is the use of images. For a community with an unhealthy fixation on finding the “perfect” (read thinnest) woman’s body, the use of images is extremely attractive, and never ending given the countless number of users. Having a digital thinspiration scrapbook with the ability to then Facebook “like” or tweet images furthers the reach of the thinspo images.
The thinspo images on Pinterest range from muscular and fit to emaciated and unhealthy. Some of the images even encourage women to be extremely thin like one called “Skinny Smarts” which tells women to drink water, brush their teeth, drink green tea, chew gum, paint their nails, or look at thinso images all before deciding to eat.
While there is a “report pin” option on Pinterest none of the options – nudity or pornography, attacks a group or individual, graphic violence, hateful speech or symbols, and spam – fall under the thinspiration category. Many of these images, however, glorify an incredibly unhealthy body as beautiful and should be taken down for the health and safety of the entire Pinterest community.
What do you think? Are these images damaging to women and the Pinterest community?
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