Vine Cracks Down on Pornography, Bans Sexually Explicit Content

Vine logo

Twitter is cracking down on sexually explicit content on Vine. Since shortly after launching on the Apple App Store, Vine has restricted sexually explicit content. Now, for the first time, the app is outright banning pornographic content from its service.

Vine announced the change to its content rules on its blog. “We don’t have a problem with explicit sexual content on the Internet – we just prefer not to be the source of it,” the company wrote.

In its Help Center, Vine defines sexually explicit content as posts that depict sex acts, sexually provocative nudity, and graphic depictions of sexual arousal. Artful or nonsexual depictions of nudity, on the other hand, including documentary or educational images, are still permitted. Images of breastfeeding and nude models wills still pass muster, as will sexually suggestive posts such as clothed, suggestive dancing.

Reviewing and Appealing Sexually Explicit Post Reports

Twitter stressed to ZDNet that the ban is not designed to please advertisers, and that the company has no plans to introduce advertising to Vine. Twitter also emphasized that sexually explicit content will be policed by humans rather than by an automated process.

First, users themselves will report sexually explicit content on Vine by using the “Report this post” link. Next, Vine employees will review the reported content to determine whether it violates the new sexual content policy. Implicated users who feel their posts don’t violate the policy are able to fight back through Twitter’s appeal process.

Any user found to violate Vine’s policy will receive a warning and may have his account suspended until the content in question is removed. Severe or repeated violations, Twitter notes, may result in permanent suspension.

When Vine changed its policy, users who’ve posted questionable content received in-app notifications, according to ZDNet. Notified users have one week to make changes to avoid having their accounts suspended.

Sexually Explicit Content on Social Media

Whether social media users should be allowed to publish sexually explicit content has been a hot-button issue for some time. When Tumblr, known for its swaths of artistic and not-so-artistic nudity, was acquired by Yahoo, users worried that Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer would impose a ban on sexually explicit content similar to Vine’s. Facebook recently took heat when user Kristy Kemp was banned for posting images of mothers breastfeeding.

What do you think? Should sexually explicit content be banned from social networks?

Lauren Mobertz

By Lauren Mobertz

Lauren is the former managing editor for DashBurst. One part geek, one part urban nomad, she is constantly scouting for the latest tech and world news. In the evenings you'll find Lauren running in strange places or attempting to dance salsa.