Instagram removes photo of boy without an eye, social media users accuse platform of discrimination

A photo of a child suffering from Goldenhar syndrome, a rare congenital defect characterized by incomplete development, was removed by Instagram as it did not confine to their set guidelines. The mother of the child took to Twitter to question the actions of Instagram.

By: Trends Desk | New Delhi | Updated: September 16, 2017 12:30 pm
Instagram removes boy's photo, Instagram removes photo of a boy without an eye, Instagram boy story, boy without an eye, Goldenhar syndrome, incomplete development, Indian express, Indian express news The tweet received over one lakh re-tweets and 71,300 likes.(Source: Charlie Beswick/ Twitter)

Over the years, social media has transformed and so have the policies and guidelines surrounding its content. From Facebook, Twitter to Instagram, users of each of these platforms are restricted by certain rules and regulations they must follow. Moreover, to manage content better, anything objectionable can be reported by the users. It’s only when the reported content is found objectionable it’s removed by the platform. However, ‘who decides whether something is objectionable or not?’ is a question that is often asked. A recent incident, where Instagram removed a photo of a 12-year-old boy without an eye, has again ruffled a few feathers on social media.

Harry Beswick was born with Goldenhar syndrome, which is a rare congenital defect characterized by incomplete development of the ear, nose, soft palate, lip, and mandible. His mother recently posted a picture of the little boy without his prosthetic eye, which was later removed by Instagram for ‘breaching guidelines’. After which she received an e-mail informing her that the image was ‘incorrectly removed’. This was the second time Instagram removed Harry’s image without his prosthetic eye and Ms. Beswick decided to spread some awareness about it. She tweeted,

Support flew in from all directions and Ms. Beswick’s tweet received over one lakh re-tweets and 71,300 likes. Many called out to Instagram for being insensitive and biased and suggested to up their policies, others encouraged the young mother and offered support.

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