Facebook and Instagram have banned the use of ‘sexual emojis’ including the eggplant, peach and water drips.
The new guidelines state that the taboo emojis cannot be used to depict sexual activity and nude body parts can’t be covered up with the playful symbols.
However, the social media giants are being criticized for being overly concerned about the hidden meanings of emojis rather than the racism and propaganda that lurks on their sites.
Facebook has updated its guidelines banning the use of ‘commonly sexual emojis’ including eggplant (left), peach (right) and the water drips. Posts found with the taboo emojis will be removed and repeat offenders may have their accounts deactivated
The eggplant emoji has been used to suggest a penis, a peach resembles a buttocks and water drips are in reference to ejaculation.
They can still be used in captions, but not in a manner that suggests or asks for anything sexual.
WHAT DO THE NEW GUIDELINES SAY?
Criteria 1: Offer or Ask Content implicitly or indirectly* (typically through providing a method of contact) offers or asks for: Nude imagery, or Sex or sexual partners, or Sex chat conversations
The new guidelines state that the taboo emojis, like the water drip, cannot be used to mention or depiction sexual activity
Criteria 2: Suggestive Elements Content makes the aforementioned offer or ask using one of the following sexually suggestive elements: Contextually specific and commonly sexual emojis or emoji strings, or Regional sexualized slang, or Mentions or depictions of sexual activity (including hand drawn, digital, or real world art) such as: sexual roles, sex positions, fetish scenarios, state of arousal, act of sexual intercourse or activity (sexual penetration or self-pleasuring), or Imagery of real individuals with nudity covered by human parts, objects, or digital obstruction, including long shots of fully nude butts
Content must meet Criteria 1 (offer or ask) and be implicitly or indirectly offering or asking for sexual solicitation in order to be deemed violating.
For example, if content is a hand-drawn image depicting sexual activity but does not ask or offer sexual solicitation, it is not violating.
An offer or ask for pornographic material (including, but not limited to, sharing of links to external pornographic websites).
The new guidelines were first brought to light by XBIZ, which reported that Facebook revised its Sexual Solicitation Community Standards between September 7 and October 24, according to The Daily Dot.
The change is aimed at sex workers who will no longer be able to use the digital icons to sell services on both Facebook and Instagram.
But the ban could affect other users who simply use the emojis to joke about or talk about sex.
Facebook has also stated that it is against the new policies to use the banned emojis to cover genitalia in pictures that are shared on the platforms.
The new rules come from section 16 of Community Standards, under ‘Sexual Solicitation.’
In the introduction to this new addition, Facebook states that they draw the line ‘When content facilitates, encourages or coordinates sexual encounters between adults.’
And there are two new criteria that fall under this section.
The first being is a user must ‘implicitly or indirectly’ offer some form of sexual communication, be it ‘nude imagery,’ sex, or ‘sex chat conversations.’
The second criteria is that content has to have some form of ‘sexually suggestive elements.’
That includes, among other things, ‘contextually specific and commonly sexual emojis or emoji strings.’
This means that using one of the emojis deemed sexual can result in your post being removed and repeated us of the digital images, can result in your account being deactivated.
The social media sites may think they are doing right in the world by banning sexual emojis, but the public feels otherwise.
Many Twitter users are ridiculing Facebook for using its time to ban emojis while letting hate run rampant on its sites.
Perrie Edwards shared a post on Instagram wearing a see-through top, but placed star emojis over her nipples
Bella Thorne (left)used the kissing face emoji to cover her nipples in an Instagram post. Miley Cyrus took a nude photo in her bathroom, but covered certain areas with a star emoji
‘Facebook’s about to start banning people for smutty art and butt shots. They still won’t ban Nazis and TERFs because ‘free speech,’ but god help you if you use an eggplant emoji,’ one user shared
The eggplant emoji has been used to suggest a penis while a peach resembles a buttocks. They can still be used in captions, but not in a manner that suggests or asks for anything sexual, which some users see as a waste of resrouces
‘Facebook’s about to start banning people for smutty art and butt shots. They still won’t ban Nazis and TERFs because ‘free speech,’ but god help you if you use an eggplant emoji,’ one user shared.
Another chastised the site for not banning certain images such as confederate flags and MAGA hats.
Amber rose shared a post of herself on Instagram with a see-through top, but covered her nipples with the hear emoji
Celebrities like Blac Chyna (left) and Kylie Jenner (right) are known for sharing the banned emojis in their Instagram captions
using one of the emojis deemed sexual can result in your post being removed and repeated us of the digital images, can result in your account being deactivated
Facebook has also stated that it is against the new policies to use the banned emojis to cover genitalia in pictures that are shared on the platforms, while some Twitter users would rather see the ban of confederate flags and MAGA hats
And this is not the first time there has been a war on emojis – Instagram has tried to ban the eggplant in 2015.
Instagram confirmed that the eggplant was blocked because it violated their community guidelines, Buzzfeed reported, which revealed users can still search for the gun, syringe and corncob emoji, a search for the eggplant results in ‘no tags found’.
Thee social media giants are being ridiculed by users who are more concerned about the ‘propaganda’ and ‘racism’ on the sites, rather than the hidden meanings of emojis
Many Twitter users are ridiculing Facebook for using its time to ban emojis while letting hate fake news rampant on its sites
The social media sites may think they are doing right in the world by banning sexual emojis, but the public feels otherwise