Facebook Bans Breastfeeding Photos


(In the above pic to promote World Breastfeeding Week Lucy Lawless is pictured breastfeeding her then three-month-old son Judah)

More than 58,000 people reportedly are protesting Facebook’s decision to remove images of women breastfeeding from the social networking site.

The controversy actually began in the summer of 2007 when Kelli Roman’s Facebook profile photo of her nursing her infant daughter disappeared. There was no explanation as to why the photo was deleted from her page and Facebook never responded to her inquiries asking why it was removed.

Kelli started a Facebook group — Hey Facebook, Breastfeeding is Not Obscene. Within the group’s page is a collection of photos — many of which were the ones that had been removed from the users’ profile pages. But even though these photos haven’t been removed, Facebook still hasn’t changed its policy.

The group is not relenting and has organized a virtual “nurse-in” on Facebook on December 27th. They’re asking members to change their profile photo for the day, to a picture of a nursing child, and to add the sentence, “Hey Facebook, breastfeeding is not obscene!” to their status message.

“We need to take our bodies back,” said mother and protester Stephanie Muir. “Whether there’s a nipple exposed or not, female breasts, specifically in the context of breast-feeding, should not be considered obscene.”

Facebook spokesman Barry Schnitt said the site removes photos only when the entire breast is shown.

“These policies are designed to ensure Facebook remains a safe, secure and trusted environment for all users, including the many children who use the site,” said Barry Schnitt.

What do you think? And will you participate in the “nurse-in?”


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  3. Lidia says

    In response to post 30, if you had read the comment I was referring to, you would have to agree that the logic is flawed. What she said was that seeing breastfeeding kids is hard for women who can’t have kids. What I said was, why is is just the kids who are breastfeeding that make those women sad? When I was struggling with fertility, I was sad whenever I saw a mother and child, whether they were breastfeeding, etc. Children have a right to eat, and if it makes the childless feel a bit sad, well, that is sad too, but it does not change a baby’s hunger issue. Is that same mom sad when she sees a child being bottlefed? I just don’t get it.

  4. post 30 says

    I think you logic is a little flawed as well. Unless these woman are feeding said kids you mentioned bare chested, than you have no argument.

  5. Kim says

    Don’t even give these ridiculous protesters the time of day. After their kids are weaned they’ll forget all about these silly protests.

  6. J says

    For the record, Facebook DOES allow breastfeeding photos, they just don’t allow photos that show nipple The woman in the facebook groups who complain about equal rights are just upset because nobody wants to look at their nasty photos they call beautiful and artistic.

    There IS a thing called modesty. I get a laugh out of some of the women who claim they make a learning lesson to all in public while they breastfeed. I highly doubt it. I have seen plenty of women in public breastfeeding and NONE of them feel the need to show their entire breasts, flash nipples, make a long show of breastfeeding, etc.

    It’s natural, but these women make it a show.

  7. Enough says

    I’ve been to the Hey Facebook, breastfeeding is not obscene group, and the group is just a bunch of cliquey jerk women and a man named Paul Rapoport who likes looking at bare breasts so much he pretends to care and encourages women to post more photos for his enjoyment.

    The page is pitiful. They are all hypocritical people complaining about how they try to teach their friends to breastfeed and when the friends don’t listen and do what it right for them, the crazy women go to the facebook page to complain and trash their friend who didn’t listen.

    Also, I’m all for breastfeeding, but you CAN take and post a decent photo. All the photos are the same. middle aged women who apparnetly don’t care to look nice anymore, striking poses with a newborn and a toddler latched on to their moley, sun damaged, freckled chest. It’s not art, it’s just pathetic.

  8. Lidia says

    In response to Sarah Ansom:

    I can sympatize with women struggling with fertility issues: I have in fact had three miscarriages. However, I was never offended seeing a woman breastfeed. I think that your heart is in the right place, but your logic is flawed.

    Along this same line of logic, would you also be offended seeing a women feeding a toddler baby food from a spoon? How about a child eating an ice cream cone? Why is it that just the breastfeeding would be banned in this case? Should women be permitted to post ANY pictures of their kids, eating or not, or risk offending the childless?

  9. Sarah Ansom says

    Breastfeeding IS a wonderful thing. The problem is, it is very offensive to women who can’t and don’t have children to see a woman showing a photo of her breast feeding online. Can you imagine how many thoughts of pain or grief that run through the minds of such women? Sometimes someone’s joy could be another’s sorrow even if the intentions were good. I hope pictures like these could stay at a private mode and not for the world to see.

  10. Babymama says

    Some of the people on this forum haven’t looked at what it’s supposed to be about recently, because your comments are making it really difficult to “celebrate motherhood” and “enjoy the warmth of spirited girl talk.” Catcat and Catsue (any relation?) seem to have a lot of time on their hands for passing judgment, but comparing me feeding my baby to you giving your hubby a bj is way out of line. Breastfeeding feels good so that you will want to do it, but it seems like some people are having trouble separating physical closeness and pleasure through contact with your baby from sexual pleasure.

    Also, has anyone considered that the FDA actually has guidelines for our processed foods that regulate how many bug parts, rat hairs, and feces that food can have in it per pound? Is feeding your baby something like that really less gross than breastfeeding? Or are you just making excuses because breastfeeding was hard and you quit?

  11. Lidia says

    I think it is very sad that some of you think that breastfeeding is gross. Do you think it’s gross when you see a calf nursing from it’s mother in a farmer’s field? Providing nutrition to our children is one of the primary purposes of our breasts. And although I won’t judge others who chose not to breastfeed, I take issue when they judge me for nursing longer than 6 months. That is an arbitrary date that you have chosen, but the average age of weaning worldwide is closer to three or four YEARS, not 6 months. As for health and sickness, it is unfortunate for those children who are breastfed and were sick, but I can’t imagine how much sicker they might have been had they not had their mother’s immunity boost to help them out. Why would we think that giving our children chemicals and artificial breastmilk would be BETTER for them than the milk that was custom made for them by the body that they grew in? Would we think it is better for a child to develop in an incubator than it would be for them to grow in a womb? The breastmilk substitutes are just that- substitutes for breastmilk, and should never be considered to be better for baby.

    And FYI, mothers who are passionate about breastfeeding do not have “nothing better to do”. They are passionate about breastfeeding in the same way that other people are passionate about their interests, lifestyles and choices. Show some respect, please.

  12. celestia says

    you girls are so stupid. didint any of you who think breastfeeding is gross go to school? breasts are made 4 baby. duh! you girls are the ones that are gross 4 thinking breasts have anything to do with sex. go back to school and learn something you sick freaks!

  13. erin says

    It’s a mothers personal decision whether she wants to breastfeed or not, and shes not a bad person either way. I don’t like how women who breastfeed bash on other mothers who don’t breastfeed, but then they want to get mad when people are grossed out by these women whipping out there whole tit in public to breastfeed their child and even showing these pictures on the internet. Good for you if you breastfeed, but its gross that to show pictures of your shirt completely off and having a baby and a two year old latched on. I bottlefed my child and he is just as healthy as other children and we bond just fine, I don’t have to use breastfeeding to bond with my child, there are other ways to do that.

  14. catsue says

    I am sick and tired of idiot mothers who have no life other to talk about their passion for breast feeding and how wrong it is to bottle feed. I know only 2 moms out of 14 (in the past 7 years) who breast fed and those 2 babies were the only ones who were sick all the time, over weight, developed allergies, and had ear aches. I think there is something seriously wrong with mothers who breast feed after 6 months! I think they are looking for stimulation that their husbands aren’t giving them and they are just using breast feeding as an excuse.

  15. catcat says

    Why would you have your facebook profile photo of you breast feeding? GROSS! I’m a mom and I’m sick and tired of other mom’s whipping out their boobs in public! I don’t care if it’s natural! Cover up or go home! Do you want to see me giving my husband a BJ? That’s part of his body and I’m sure no one wants to see that either! Good for Facebook!

  16. Georgia says

    I dont know who would want to put up photos of themselves breastfeeding on facebook but anyway…..it makes me really mad that its ok for girls to be seen in skimpy little clothing with their breasts almost showing but a woman breastfeeding (which is the most NATURAL THING IN THE WORLD) is somehow not ok. Just because men feel uncomfortable, that is sooooo selfish! Women can breastfeed wherever they friggen want, cant starve a baby!

  17. sallymae says

    Yes, let us whip out our t*ts and display them in the name of “freedom of expression.” Women are so amazing with the important things they choose to fight for. You can post pictures of you breastfeeding, just do not let your t*ts be showing!! How hard is that to accomplish?? Women also like to make it completely seperate: “When I showing them off in a bikini, you can think of them as sexual, but when I post my whole nipple and breast and there is a baby there, then you CANNOT, no matter what think of them as sexual!!” Give me a break! You should not be showing your nipple/whole breasts no matter what the context!! There are many, many public ways to breastfeed without exposing yourself. And then women get mad when men look over at them as they expose their boobies! It is only nautral lady. “Oh, I should be turned on when there is no baby present, but turned on when baby is 600 feet away.”

  18. Anne says

    I breast fed my son but preferred to keep it private and not for public display. Breasts are sensual to men and seeing a mother breast feeding her baby no doubt arouses their male hormones. There is a time and a place and what is accepted in other countries is not necessarily accepted in others. That is my opinion and I don’t want any negative comments-thank you.

  19. Sandra says

    Sorry my internet keeps failing, dang snow storms!

    I personally would rather see people have sit ins and fight for the rights to breastfeed in public, as there are still laws about bf’ing in public. I wouldn’t get my feathers in a bind over pictures posted on a social networking sight.

  20. Sandra says

    Mayan sure it’s nuturing so is feeding your kid food in whatever form not just breast. To me nursing my child is something I share a bond with my child and is very personal. I don’t need to flaunt it on the internet with pictures to prove that I breastfeed.

    I don’t get offended by pictures, but to freak out and have a sit in. I would REALLY love to see the people in the porn industry to have a sit in and screw over facebook to prove that it is ok. We all know sex is natural and nuturing, we all know that breastfeeding is natural and nuturing but if you really want to post pictures of yourself doing it create your own website, not something that is owned by someone else. JMO

  21. kelley says

    First and foremost, you have to report the pornographic material to facebook before they will remove it. Second, you can bet someone reported on the breastfeeding photos. That being said no one should be forced to see something that they find offensive even if it is breastfeeding. My advice……don’t look!

  22. Mayan says

    Sandra, it has nothing to do with “getting a rise out of others” its about a womens right to nurture her child in any sitution and to be proud of it! there is nothing gross or wrong about allowing people to see a wonderful part of motherhood. breast feeding is beautiful and to be able to do it is such a wonderful treat! a wonderful experience! whats the difference in feeding a baby a bottle and feeding a baby with the breast? its not about sex its about NURTURE!!

  23. Sandra says

    Ok so breastfeeding is so natural. Why do you need to display pictures of you nursing your child on a networking site. I am a breastfeeding mom, but I would never post my tits on any website just to get a rise out of others.

    All pictures that are pornographic or obscene should be removed from the sight as well. I just don’t see the purpose of displaying yourself like that even if it is “natural.”

  24. Anon says

    Ah, only in America is there such a heavy double standard. And for a country that is supposed to be so far ahead of times, we sure are still in the Dark Ages about sex and naked bodies. Never seen such a bunch of prudes in my life!!

  25. Nancy says

    Why does “Gerik Golfo Golfo” get to keep his filthy photo up in Facebook but breastfeeding moms are given a hard time for doing something natural such as feeding their babies?

    Who is Barry Schnitt actually protecting?
    Type “Gerik Golfo Golfo” under the search engine in Facebook and see what you get. That’s not obscene?!?!?!?
    Talk about a double standard!

  26. 2teens says

    If anyone tried to sue facebook for their bf photos being exploited they would not win. People make a decision to put personal photos on the internet knowing that anyone in the world can see them or download them. The fact that facebook is only targeting bf photos when the site is rampant with other nudity and p.or.n needs some further explanation from Barry Schnitt.

  27. you never know says

    I can understand both points. As breast feeding is a natural process, but facebook needs to cover there own butts too. While it may be natural, there are a lot of sickos and perverts out there that may just exlpoit the pictures. You have to see both sides. I’m sure they aren’t doing it b/c they don’t agree, just protecting themselves

  28. says

    I have no problem with pictures of women breastfeeding. But since it is a free site, I have no problem with letting Facebook make their own call. Now if I was paying to participate with Facebook, I might rebel.

  29. Collette uk says

    Oh my god breastfeeding is natural it what they was intended to ridicolous it ok for some women to fault there breasts but not for nurturing a child

  30. Wow! says

    Sick, I mean the facebook people are sick. How can society move on if this kind of people are still in charge!!!!

  31. what? says

    It’s not my fault people have a F***ED UP idea that a woman’s breast is for sexual purposes only…….I make milk, what’s your superpower? I shouldn’t have to hide that. No other mammal does. If you get off or are offended by me feeding my child, then YOU have issues, not me!

  32. Nancy says

    While searching for an old friend named Golfo on facebook a few days ago, I accidentally got to see this guy’s photo listed under: “Gerik Golfo Golfo”.
    Talk about obscene!!!

    Are you kidding me? This guy gets away with posting this filth and you’re giving nursing moms crap?!?!?!

  33. Kristeena says

    So it’s okay to show women in a sexual content, but not breastfeeding. This is a natural thing and should not be frowned upon. Get over it!!!


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