If you thought Facebook’s community standards was crystal clear in what is acceptable and what is not, you’d be wrong. Like most businesses, some look to Facebook to advertise or create a community where like-minded people can safely discuss things of interest. Things that do not harm anyone involved. Think of it as a submissive and dominant relationship. Giving and taking in an environment with consent.
The only thing crystal clear is Facebook’s double standard
In most of the US, where Facebook is based, sex work is illegal. It’s still a no no and taboo to talk about sex yet the porn industry of the US rakes in millions upon millions in cash. The adage of “sex sells” isn’t a lie. Sex does sell. We bring this point up because in Australia, sex work isn’t illegal. Sex work is governed by state and territory laws. Just like a brothel has to be a licensed business to run, sex workers have to register in most states as well.
We have a client who is an escort directory. Escorts pay this client to be listed in their directory. Through the client’s social media, they promote their escorts. As clients of the directory, it’s part of the listing and advertising package they pay for. The escort directory dutifully followed Facebook’s “community standards” and only used photos that they knew wouldn’t be red flagged.
This all came to a halt last week.
This is where the double standard comes into play and it all comes down to a post about a transsexual escort.
We guarantee the social media giant would never admit the true reasoning behind them unpublishing the client’s page but it all started with this post.
Before you say, “well, it’s advertising sex for sale” or “it mentions a type of service” or “it mentions the word escort” and that all falls into the “community standards”, we should let it be known this page has been running for some time and has posted multiple items about being an escort.
See the following exhibits:
The media giant didn’t have any issues with the posts about straight women or men being escorts. Those posts didn’t even make the world of Facebook bat an eye, but the post about their transsexual client did. The client isn’t hiding the fact she is transsexual. She is proud of herself and our client is too. And to be honest so are we.
If you look at Hustler’s Facebook page, it’s more risqué in imagery than our client’s page.
Even if you follow all of Facebook’s community standards, one wrong post of something too adult, can get you banned for a select amount of time or permanently.
We as a marketing company might ask, whose community standards are Facebook really supporting? What we imagine it is the community of old fat white men who get off of repressing everyone and everything. Kind of like the businessman that’s going into their US Oval Office.
The First Amendment of their US Constitution protects free speech even hate-spewing speech but what if the speech isn’t hate-spewing?
What if the speech is consent to advertise legal sex work in a country where sex work is legal?
If it is standard in that country, then shouldn’t it be standard for the community of that country?