One Aussie mum has spoken of her “confusion and utter frustration” after being banned by Facebook simply for sharing information to breastfeeding mums.
Brisbane mum-of-four Kerryn Gill-Rich shared a link to a breastfeeding and parenting website about nipple blanching, a common condition that affects feeding mums.
Facebook reacted to the images accompanying the link - which showed one normal nipple and one affected by the condition - by banning Kerryn for a week.
“I posted this article… in a response to a mum who was experiencing nipple pain when breastfeeding. She had reached out in a BREASTFEEDING SUPPORT GROUP,” Kerryn wrote in a letter posted on the Breastfeeders in Australia blog.
“She was about to give up due to the lack of help she was receiving. She didn’t know what was causing her pain and she didn’t know how to fix it. My advice was not unsolicited, it was factual and medically sound."
Kerryn, who has been an administrator on the Breastfeeders in Australia Facebook page for the last five years, shared the link twice, and was barred from Facebook despite the images appearing to fall within the company's Community Standards.
“We also restrict some images of female breasts if they include the nipple, but our intent is to allow images that are shared for medical or health purposes,” the policy reads. “We also allow photos of women actively engaged in breastfeeding or showing breasts with post-mastectomy scarring.”
Despite this, Kerryn is outraged her personal connections and photos on Facebook might be compromised, all because she tried to help another struggling mum.
“I received a notification that this was not appropriate content for Facebook and was banned for a week as a result. This happened twice as I’ve shared the article more than once so I suspect there will be more bans in the pipeline,” revealed Kerryn in her letter.
“Yet, a quick search and I can find Karma Sutra positions with links to videos, topless beach babes with a poorly placed scribble across her nips, vibrators and many other pages with similar, sexual content.”
Kerryn’s ban has seen those she helps hit out, with creator of the Breastfeeders in Australia Facebook page, Lauren Threadgate, revealing Kerryn has helped save a mum’s life with her advice in the past.
“She doesn't just know about breastfeeding, but knows how to talk in a way that people understand, and to listen to them in a way that makes them feel heard,” Lauren told the Daily Mail.
One mum has even created a petition to get Facebook to lift the ban, gathering nearly 4900 signatures in just five days.