Celebrated Not Censored: Enough is Enough

An open letter to Facebook, Instagram and Tik Tok:

My name is Ruhee and I’m the founder of Rubies Bras based out of Toronto, Canada. I started my business in 2015 after being disappointed time and time again by the selection of bras available on the market. After years of uncomfortable commercial bras, I took it into my own hands to learn how to make my own bra and use this skill to give other women the chance to have bras that they need.

Our mission is to help women feel sexy and confident with bras that fit, flatter and support without compromise, no matter the size or situation. It’s also important to us that our products use premium materials that are ethically made, locally sourced and free from latex and animal products.

Like many other modern business, we put ourselves out there on social media for brand awareness and to find a community. But as a lingerie company, it’s not uncommon to see our content get taken down or restricted because they “violate” community guidelines.

 “For what?” you might ask?

Well according to Tiktok, it was “adult nudity and sexual activity” and for Instagram it was because of “overtly sexualize positioning”.

After having a “styling my bra” video get taken down on TikTok, we realized that the algorithm doesn’t just censor nipples. It censors bras too… or at least it censors the word braWe tried to appeal and failed, and then decided to delete it, re-upload it, but this time we took out any copy in the captions relating to breasts, boobs, bras and lingerie, with no change to the actual video itself. This video is still up on our page and we haven’t heard a peep from TikTok since.

For Instagram, it seems that close up shots of bras, women in bras, and women in bras with their nipples showing even just a little bit are getting censored.

Here are some examples:

  
 We are perplexed, insulted and saddened by the platforms that wants to hide bras, breasts and women’s nipples. There is no rational thought to this type of monitoring. Breasts are a normal part of a women’s body and should not only not be censored, but normalized and celebrated. Breasts are the reason we even exist on this earth through the nourishment they provide. One could argue that women’s breasts deserve more exposure and praise than men’s nipples, but the opposite seems to be true.
  
What’s more astonishing is that big brands are not getting the same treatment. Facebook, Instagram, and Tik Tok seem to have no issues with banning the same content from bigger brands, perhaps because of their ads spend we imagine, or even because of the potential backlash faced if their products weren’t approved. One can argue that these brands would fit the overtly sexual categories more-so than the small business brands like ours trying to empower women with body positivity messages and inclusiveness.
  
Women deserve better. And the message we are giving to them, especially young women, is that their breasts are something that should be hidden, chastised, and shamed if exposed. And that could be further from the truth.
 
Stand with us as we speak up, challenge the status quo and demand change.
 
Sign our petition and follow #celebratednotcensored.
 
- Ruhee Rajan, Founder, Rubies Bras
ruhee@rubiesbras.ccom

1 comment

Thank you for taking this stand. Censorship of women’s bodies, except for the titillation directed at men, has bothered me since I was old enough to be conscious of it. This shouldn’t still be a fact of life in this day and age. We need to fight back against this form of discrimination.

Sandra Jager March 07, 2022

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