Tensions flare at Charlottesville City Council meeting

Facebook explains what is and is not appropriate to post on the site

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RICHMOND, Va. -- Facebook unveiled its updated “community standards” for its 1.4 billion users, explaining what specifically is and is not appropriate to post on the social media site.

Among the rule are the following:

  • Users must use their authentic name and identity.
  • Users cannot use hate speech that directly attacks people based on race, ethnicity, gender, religion, disabilities or diseases or sexual orientation.
  • Users cannot post pictures of genitals, a fully exposed buttocks, and women’s breasts with the nipple showing, unless the woman is breast feeding or showing post-mastectomy scarring.

“This is a big first attempt at setting some rules on the wild wild west,” social media guru Dave Saunders with Madison + Main in downtown Richmond, said.

Saunders said the new guidelines are both more restrictive and less restrictive than the past, and will aid users with self-policing the site.

“When you have community standards and people violate those standards, it’s important to call them out when they do that,” Saunders said.

Facebook user Leslie Priddy said she will occasionally report what she considers inappropriate advertising on Facebook to the site, but now that the rules are more clear, she will be more inclined to report other users.

“Knowing that they actually are reading through this and do take that seriously,” Priddy said about the guidelines.

Another Facebook user in Richmond, Ramel Robinson, frequently posts pictures of his son on the site.

He said that, and inspirational messages about fitness, are what he uses the site for, but he is often taken aback by the content other people post.

“They’re showing executions oversees, sometimes local,” Robinson said.

Robinson said he never reports content he feels is inappropriate to Facebook because he is not sure what they consider a “no go” to post.

“It’s gotten real loose,” Robinson said.

But, Robinson said the new community standards will provide him a point of reference that should make it easier to report posts that he feels are not appropriate.