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If you use Instagram or follow viral trends on the internet then you might have heard about the #freethenipple campaign, it was against Instagram’s strict policy concerning images posted on the service that contain nudity. The photo-sharing website is very quick to remove images that show women’s nipples even if there’s nothing remotely pornographic about the image, that’s what led to the campaign and now Instagram has tried to explain by saying that it’s hands are tied due to Apple’s strict guidelines for assigning age-appropriate ratings for apps.

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During a talk in London Instagram CEO Kevyn Systrom said that Instagram wants to retain its existing 12+ rating in order to have access to a greater audience, even if it’s the kind of audience that might only have pictures of their food and cat to share on the service.

Apps on the App Store can only feature explicit content if they’re rated 17+ and that’s not a rating that Instagram wants for itself. It’s bewildering though that the app quickly removes images showing women’s nipples but the same standard isn’t applied to photos showing men’s nipples.

Many celebrities have lent their voice to the #freethenipple campaign but it doesn’t appear that Instagram is going to change its policies anytime soon, unless Apple agrees that it’s not going to jack up the app’s rating, which it can’t even be speculated right now if it plans on doing at any point in the future.

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