Facebook 'censors photo of disabled model'

Manuela Migliaccio -- “Nudity wasn’t necessarily the object of the photo”

 ROME -- Disabled model, Manuela Migliaccio, claims Facebook censored her image on the runway at Milan Fashion Week due to “too much breast on show.”

 First it disappeared from the Facebook page for ‘Vertical’, an Italian research foundation for spinal cord injuries, and then from Migliaccio’s personal page. Finally, the ‘provocative’ photo was taken off the newsfeed entirely and erased from the history of the 300 users who shared it.

 “Nudity wasn’t necessarily the object of the photo”, explained the model, “clearly Facebook upholds very strict rules on these things. Nevertheless, looking at other subjects which circulate all over the media -- boobs, bums and animals with their throats slit -- I don’t think one can look at my photo and talk of pornography or vulgarity, or claim that I am trying to degrade the female image like I have been accused of doing.”

 Instead, the principal message behind the show was that a disabled model in a wheelchair is essentially the same as a model who walks on foot.

 President of ‘Vertical’, Fabrizio Bertoccioni, spoke to Il Fatto Quotidiano, claiming, “In the past I have never seen a high-fashion show with women in wheelchairs… We aim to gather support for this new type of catwalk, we want to create a cultural revolution. The disabled models are trained to wear the clothes, just like other models, and they become objects of the designs they display… The overall goal is to achieve real cultural change.”

 However, the foundation’s dreams of going viral were recently quashed by the Facebook corporation.

 Nowadays, social media is absolutely essential in the transmission of a ground-breaking cause, allowing even just a small idea to spread across the globe and raise awareness on an international level. In the case of Manuela Migliaccio however, Facebook seemed to do the exact opposite, censoring and deleting her catwalk photo due to “too much breast.”

 The social networking site defends their decision, claiming that, in the vast majority of cases, a photo is only taken down when someone sends a complaint.

 Indeed, negative online reaction is an issue the model in question knows all too well about, recounting, “the web is divided into two factions, those who understand the message and those who don’t love to see a disabled person living their life to the full. In Italy it seems that if you have a disability, you should stay at home.”

 Criticism also arrived from individuals who have the same disability as the head-strong model, considering her boldness to be “an error.” They claim that by openly displaying how a someone in a wheelchair can live perfectly well, this may lead to a slow-down in scientists trying to find a cure for certain disabilities.

 Migliaccio responded quickly to such comments, saying, “They say I am the reason why they’ve stopped research into a cure for spinal injuries? I really find it all a bit exaggerated. It’s a wheelchair, not a nuclear weapon!”