After Facebook clarified its policy on mastectomy pictures following an outrage and a petition by cancer survivor Scorchy Barrington, the social media giant has come under fire again.

The bottom line is that Facebook will allow people to post mastectomy photos but only if both breasts are removed, alienating women who have one breast left.

A strange policy to be sure, especially when such photos are often used to raise awareness, not titillate.


In Spain, Facebook censors have yet again demonstrated the inflexibility of the policy, after removeing a picture of a model who had one of her breasts removed because of cancer as part of a campaign to support women suffering from the condition.

Spanish photographer Benya Acame uploaded a picture of the model who had undergone a mastectomy with the message that "Beauty is not only skin deep but is in fact an inner quality that can still shine through".


Facebook's policy

He said he had also done it to motivate women not to be embarrassed if they had been forced to undergo a similar operation, saying: "Courage is an inner quality that we choose how to dress, and wherever there is a problem there is also a solution."

He said: "It was a very artistic picture and not at all distasteful and it was in black-and-white, it never occurred to me that Facebook would take it down."

The woman in the picture, Malu Galeote, had undergone a mastectomy to remove her right breast and then had been photographed by the photographer from the Spanish southeastern town of Elche.


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The photographer had agreed to do the snap because "Breast cancer is the most common tumour in women" and said that his picture "aimed to be part of the solution in helping women to lose fears and complexes" .

He added: "it was published in other social networks such as Flickr and there were no problems there."

But a Facebook spokesman said that the picture violated their policy on nudity.

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