Published March 29, 2015
Wow! Did you catch that crazy nipple kerfuffle that’s been taking social media by storm over the past couple of days, snowballing from a couple of posts to Iceland’s lonely corner of Twitter to a full-fledged “trending topic” (whatever that is). The #FreeTheNipple campaign, as interpreted and implemented by Iceland’s feisty feminist youth, has given us all plenty of important stuff to think about: total agency over self, body-shaming, revenge-porn, double-standards, the costs and consequences of allowing archaic norms and standards to prevail…
That conversation is ongoing and you should go acquaint yourself right now at #FreeTheNipple (jerkfaces only out to snicker at random strangers’ boobs should use the opportunity to reconsider their life choices).
At Grapevine HQ, as we have pondered the above points, the occasion has brought some additional, no-less important lessons about the nature of social media, the pitfalls of relying on outside entities to spread whatever it is we want to spread, and the true cost of convenience. Long story short: we found our entire site – the entirety of www.grapevine.is – blacklisted from Facebook for the majority of yesterday. Anytime anyone tried to share any of our stories or images, on their walls, pages or even in private conversation with friends, they would get a message saying that Facebook’s security systems had deemed our site “insecure” and that they would have to remove our link to “continue”. Here, read our story about it.
Now, the gargantuan social network has some pretty clear guidelines re: nudity and we weren’t honestly surprised that they would try to suppress images symbolizing an ideological awakening-slash-uprising if they involved boobs (boobs are SCARY. Except when they are being used to incentivize the purchase of beer or other products, then they are OK). However, throughout the history of human thought, most, if not all, important ideas, have sprung from the margins, often directly flying in the face of conventional wisdom and common decency.
As we continue to trade away our privacy for convenience, as we grant outside entities with their own interests to protect (and agendas to push) the power to shape our reality (or at least the avenues through which we interact with our friends and/or source most of our news and knowledge of the outside world), this is important to bear in mind.
Next time, it might not be about nipples.
(not that nipples aren’t important. They are. Very. Just ask your nearest baby).
In that spirit, we urge you to follow our Twitter and our Google Plus (people use that, right?) and our RSS feed, and maybe check in on the website itself every now and again. In the immortal words of Boards of Canada:
“If you can be told what you can see or read, then it follows that you can be told what to say or think.”
Love you guys,
Your Friends At The Reykjavík Grapevine
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