Facebook bans educational video about breast cancer

Social media giant Facebook has banned an educational video about breast cancer because it believes it contains nudity, a baffled charity boss said.

Cancer Focus Northern Ireland footage shows women how to check their breasts using a plastic model and illustrates the signs and symptoms on an infographic.

It was presented by broadcaster Rebecca McKinney and launched as part of breast cancer awareness month in October.

Roisin Foster, chief executive of Cancer Focus NI, said: “I am completely baffled by this decision by Facebook.

“All we are trying to do is educate women about how to check themselves, raise awareness of the signs and symptoms and raise money for support for younger women with breast cancer.

“We know anecdotally that many women aren’t aware of all the signs of breast cancer apart from finding a lump. Nor are they sure how to check themselves or how often.”

She said one in 10 women in Northern Ireland got breast cancer, so it was essential that these messages are spread.

“Social media is a vital part of promoting our health cancer prevention work.”

Banning the video from the charity’s Facebook business page, Facebook said: “Some audiences are sensitive to different things when it comes to nudity.”

Ms Foster said the material was “inoffensive, tasteful and educational” and added she was perplexed at the decision.

Ms McKinney said the video was about trying to save women’s lives.

“Before getting involved in this campaign I didn’t check my breasts but I’ve since learned how crucial it is for early detection. Women need to check their breasts regularly to get to ‘know their normal’.

“This is an excellent awareness campaign as well as a fundraiser for an extremely important cause and I’m so proud to be an ambassador.”

Facebook has been contacted for comment.

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