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Tags: abortion | social media | technology | tiktok | instagram | suspending | posts

Pro-abortion Groups Call Out Social Media Censorship

By    |   Tuesday, 11 June 2024 08:33 AM EDT

Several pro-abortion groups are claiming that social media platforms such as TikTok and Instagram are becoming more aggressive about suspending posts about abortion services, particularly about abortion pill access, and they say they are becoming confused and frustrated about how the posts are being moderated.

"Without clear guidelines, it's difficult to hold them accountable for their actions that could be impacting users or to identify and address any content moderation that affects what people can find online," Jane Eklund, a fellow for Amnesty International USA, told The New York Times. "Transparency is the main point."

Eklund's group released a report Tuesday that calls on tech companies to outline their rules about content related to abortion.

Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America said that it has been routine for big tech companies to limit the rights of it and other pro-life organizations, including blocking advertising and suspending accounts without giving much explanation.

But now, the actions also involve pro-abortion accounts as well.

Hey Jane, a telemedicine abortion service, said TikTok has suspended its service four times, and Mayday Health, a nonprofit that gives information about access to abortion pills, said Instagram suspended it. Both organizations said that they got no explanation about the actions.

In addition, the search engine Bing has flagged the website for Aid Access, which sells abortion pills online, as being unsafe.

The companies said that the platforms have gotten more aggressive about such posts after the Supreme Court's ruling overturning Roe v. Wade in 2022.

Some women and organizations are changing how they talk about the subject online, including intentionally misspelling abortion or substituting words.

"We shouldn't have to substitute words — we shouldn't have to censor ourselves," Ashley Garcia, a content creator who made two videos last year to promote Hey Jane, commented.

The tech companies are claiming, though, that they have not made significant shifts in how they handle content about abortion, adding that their suspensions and flagging of Hey Jane, Mayday Health, and Aid Access had been done by mistake and they corrected the issues.

TikTok commented that people can submit videos about abortion but it has a longstanding policy against advertising abortion services, which it calls "unsuitable businesses, products or services," as it does ads for organ transplants or plastic surgery.

Instagram, meanwhile, says it allows advertising for abortion services.

However, Instagram last year removed a post from Ipas, which promotes abortion rights, after it shared the World Health Organization's protocol for medicated abortions, saying it violated parent company Meta's policy about selling "regulated goods or services."

Meta spokesman Ryan Daniels said that the company's platforms, which included Facebook, allows ads and posts from groups on both sides of the abortion issue, because it wants the platforms to be a place where reliable information can be accessed about health services, and where people can discuss public policies.

Sandy Fitzgerald

Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics. 

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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Several pro-abortion groups are claiming that social media platforms such as TikTok and Instagram are becoming more aggressive about suspending posts about abortion services, and they say they are becoming frustrated about how the posts are being moderated.
abortion, social media, technology, tiktok, instagram, suspending, posts, moderated
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2024-33-11
Tuesday, 11 June 2024 08:33 AM
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