These Moms Are Upset After Instagram Deletes Photos Of Their Long-Haired Sons

Parker Spooner is a sweet four-year-old boy who loves the beach. Not only does he love the beach but he loves to clean up the beach and his mom, Tori, even set up an Instagram account dedicated to showing the young boy and his clean up efforts in hopes that it would encourage others to do the same. Spooner is growing increasingly frustrated however because Instagram keeps deleting pictures of Parker at the beach because he's shirtless. Parker has long hair and Tori presumes that Instagram is deleting the pictures because they thought he was a girl.

Spooner told Buzzfeed News that it was just over a year ago when the first photo of Parker was flagged on Facebook (which now owns Instagram). "They sent it and said it was sexual and we weren’t allowed to have it. It was pretty much just a warning," she said. That wasn't the only time it would happen, though. "Then the second time it happened on Facebook, it banned me for a couple of days."

Spooner then said that the issue of her son's pictures being reported spread to Instagram. Her account was actually taken down two weeks ago (it has since been reinstated.) "They said my account was taken down because too many of the photos were flagged on Instagram," she explained.

As Buzzfeed points out, both Facebook and Instagram have strict rules against nudity in photos posted on their platforms, including no photos of genitalia and children older than a toddler can be photographed without clothes. Female nipples are also banned on anyone older than a toddler.

The company admitted to Buzzfeed in a statement that it had made a mistake removing Spooner's account. “This post was taken down in error and we are sorry for the mistake. We err on the side of protecting children and for safety reasons we remove some images that show nude or partially nude children," said a spokesperson. "Even when this content is shared with good intentions, it could be used by others in unanticipated ways."

Spooner created a new account after having trouble getting a response from Instagram, and she posted a photo of Parker carrying a sign that reads, "Dear Instagram I'm a boy. I just have long hair. Quit deleting my pictures!"

Spooner told Buzzfeed she quickly realized she wasn't the only person who was having pictures of their boys removed simply because they have long hair. Others began posting their own pictures with messages of their own for Instagram using the hashtag #longhairedboyrevolution.

Although Spooner's account was reinstated, the amount of other people who are experiencing the same issues has shown her that the issue is bigger than she knew. She's hoping that Facebook and Instagram can do something to stop these photos from being flagged and deleted. "Find a solution so we’re allowed to post our boys with long hair," she said. "Have somebody manually view them if they get flagged."

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