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COMMUNITY GUIDE LINES
Every day, people come to YouWoch to share their stories, see the world through the eyes of others, and connect with friends and causes. The conversations that happen on YouWoch reflect the diversity of a community of more than two Million people communicating across countries and cultures and in dozens of languages, posting everything from text to photos and videos.
We recognize how important it is for YouWoch to be a place where people feel empowered to communicate, and we take our role in keeping abuse off our service seriously. That’s why we have developed a set of Community Standards that outline what is and is not allowed on YouWoch. Our Standards apply around the world to all types of content. They’re designed to be comprehensive – for example, content that might not be considered hate speech may still be removed for violating our bullying policies.
The goal of our Community Standards is to encourage expression and create a safe environment. We base our policies on input from our community and from experts in fields such as technology and public safety. Our policies are also rooted in the following principles:
Safety: People need to feel safe in order to build community. We are committed to removing content that encourages real-world harm, including (but not limited to) physical, financial, and emotional injury.
Voice: Our mission is all about embracing diverse views. We err on the side of allowing content, even when some find it objectionable, unless removing that content can prevent a specific harm. Moreover, at times we will allow content that might otherwise violate our standards if we feel that it is newsworthy, significant, or important to the public interest. We do this only after weighing the public interest value of the content against the risk of real-world harm.
Equity: Our community is global and diverse. Our policies may seem broad, but that is because we apply them consistently and fairly to a community that transcends regions, cultures, and languages. As a result, our Community Standards can sometimes appear less nuanced than we would like, leading to an outcome that is at odds with their underlying purpose. For that reason, in some cases, and when we are provided with additional context, we make a decision based on the spirit, rather than the letter, of the policy.
Everyone on YouWoch plays a part in keeping the platform safe and respectful. We ask people to share responsibly and to let us know when they see something that may violate our Community Standards. We make it easy for people to report potentially violating content, including Pages, Groups, profiles, individual content, and/or comments to us for review. We also give people the option to block, unfollow, or hide people and posts, so that they can control their own experience on YouWoch.
The consequences for violating our Community Standards vary depending on the severity of the violation and a person's history on the platform. For instance, we may warn someone for a first violation, but if they continue to violate our policies, we may restrict their ability to post on YouWoch or disable their profile. We also may notify law enforcement when we believe there is a genuine risk of physical harm or a direct threat to public safety.
Our Community Standards, which we will continue to develop over time, serve as a guide for how to communicate on YouWoch. It is in this spirit that we ask members of the YouWoch community to follow these guidelines.
1. Credible Violence
We aim to prevent potential real-world harm that may be related to content on YouWoch. We understand that people commonly express disdain or disagreement by threatening or calling for violence in facetious and non-serious ways. That's why we try to consider the language, context and details in order to distinguish casual statements from content that constitutes a credible threat to public or personal safety. In determining whether a threat is credible, we may also consider additional information like a targeted person's public visibility and vulnerability. We remove content, disable accounts, and work with law enforcement when we believe there is a genuine risk of physical harm or direct threats to public safety.
2. Dangerous Individuals and Organizations
In an effort to prevent and disrupt real-world harm, we do not allow any organizations or individuals that are engaged in the following to have a presence on
YouWoch: Terrorist activity Organized hate Mass or serial murder Human trafficking Organized violence or criminal activity We also remove content that expresses support or praise for groups, leaders, or individuals involved in these activities.
3. Promoting or Publicizing Crime
We prohibit people from promoting or publicizing violent crime, theft, and/or fraud because we do not want to condone this activity and because there is a risk of copycat behavior. We also do not allow people to depict criminal activity or admit to crimes they or their associates have committed. We do, however, allow people to debate or advocate for the legality of criminal activities, as well as address them in a rhetorical or satirical way.
4. Coordinating Harm
In an effort to prevent and disrupt real-world harm, we prohibit people from facilitating or coordinating future criminal activity that is intended or likely to cause harm to people, businesses, or animals. People can draw attention to harmful activity that they may witness or experience as long as they do not advocate for or coordinate harm.
5. Regulated Goods
To encourage safety and compliance with common legal restrictions, we prohibit attempts by individuals, manufacturers, and retailers to purchase, sell, or trade non-medical drugs, pharmaceutical drugs, and marijuana. We also prohibit the purchase, sale, gifting, exchange, and transfer of firearms, including firearm parts or ****, between private individuals on YouWoch. Some of these items are not regulated everywhere; however, because of the borderless nature of our community, we try to enforce our policies as consistently as possible. Firearm stores and online retailers may promote items available for sale off of our services as long as those retailers comply with all applicable laws and regulations. We allow discussions about sales of firearms and firearm parts in stores or by online retailers and advocating for changes to firearm regulation. Regulated goods that are not prohibited by our Community Standards may be subject to our more stringent Commerce Policies.
Suicide and Self-Injury
In an effort to promote a safe environment on YouWoch, we remove content that encourages suicide or self-injury, including real-time depictions that might lead others to engage in similar behavior. Self-injury is defined as the intentional and direct injuring of the body, including self-mutilation and eating disorders. We want YouWoch to be a space where people can share their experiences, raise awareness about these issues, and support each other through difficult experiences, and so we allow people to discuss suicide and self-injury. We encourage people to offer and to seek support from one another in connection with these difficult topics.
We work with organizations around the world to provide assistance to people in distress. We also talk with experts in suicide and self-injury to help inform our policies and enforcement. For example, we have been advised by experts that we should not remove live videos of self-harm while there is an opportunity for loved ones and authorities to provide help or resources.
We remove any content that identifies and negatively targets victims or survivors of self-injury or suicide seriously, humorously, or rhetorically. People can, however, share information about self-injury and suicide to draw attention to the issue and allow for discussion so long as they do not promote or encourage self-injury or suicide.
Child Nudity and Sexual Exploitation of Children We do not allow content that ****ually exploits or en****s children. When we become aware of apparent child exploitation, we report it to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), in compliance with applicable law. We know that sometimes people share nude images of their own children with good intentions; however, we generally remove these images because of the potential for abuse by others and to help avoid the possibility of other people reusing or misappropriating the images.
We also work with external experts, including the YouWoch Safety Advisory Board, to discuss and improve our policies and enforcement around online safety issues, especially with regard to children.
Sexual Exploitation of Adults
We recognize the importance of YouWoch as a place to discuss and draw attention to ****ual violence and exploitation. We believe this is an important part of building common understanding and community. In an effort to create space for this conversation while promoting a safe environment, we remove content that depicts, threatens or promotes ****ual violence, ****ual assault, or ****ual exploitation, while also allowing space for victims to share their experiences. We remove content that displays, advocates for, or coordinates ****ual acts with non-consenting parties or commercial ****ual services, such as prostitution and escort services. We do this to avoid facilitating transactions that may involve trafficking, coercion, and non-consensual ****ual acts.
To protect victims and survivors, we also remove images that depict incidents of ****ual violence and intimate images shared without permission from the people pictured. For additional information on these efforts,
Bullying happens in many places and comes in many different forms from making statements degrading someone's character to posting inappropriate images to threatening someone. We do not tolerate bullying on YouWoch because we want the members of our community to feel safe and respected.
We will remove content that purposefully targets private individuals with the intention of degrading or shaming them. We recognize that bullying can be especially harmful to minors, and our policies provide heightened protection for minors because they are more vulnerable and susceptible to online bullying. In certain instances, we require the individual who is the target of bullying to report content to us before removing it.
Our bullying policies do not apply to public figures because we want to allow discourse, which often includes critical discussion of people who are featured in the news or who have a large public audience. Discussion of public figures nonetheless must comply with our Community Standards, and we will remove content about public figures that violates other policies, including hate speech or credible threats.
Our Bullying Prevention Hub is a resource for teens, parents, and educators seeking support for issues related to bullying and other conflicts. It offers step-by-step guidance, including on how to start important conversations for people being bullied, parents who have a child being bullied or accused of bullying, and educators who have students involved with bullying.
We do not tolerate harassment on YouWoch. We want people to feel safe to engage and connect with their community. Our harassment policy applies to both public and private individuals because we want to prevent unwanted or malicious contact on the platform. Context and intent matter, and we allow people to share and re-share posts if it is clear that something was shared in order to condemn or draw attention to harassment. In addition to reporting such behavior and content, we encourage people to use tools available on YouWoch to help protect against it.
Privacy Violations and Image Privacy Rights
Privacy and the protection of personal information are fundamentally important values for YouWoch. We work hard to keep your account secure and safeguard your personal information in order to protect you from potential physical or financial harm. You should not post personal or confidential information about others without first getting their consent. We also provide people ways to report imagery that they believe to be in violation of their privacy rights.
We do not allow hate speech on YouWoch because it creates an environment of intimidation and exclusion and in some cases may promote real-world violence. We define hate speech as a direct attack on people based on what we call protected characteristics — race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, ****ual orientation, caste, ****, gender, gender identity, and serious disease or disability. We also provide some protections for immigration status. We define attack as violent or dehumanizing speech, statements of inferiority, or calls for exclusion or segregation. We separate attacks into three tiers of severity, as described below.
Sometimes people share content containing someone else’s hate speech for the purpose of raising awareness or educating others. Similarly, in some cases, words or terms that might otherwise violate our standards are used self-referentially or in an empowering way. When this is the case, we allow the content, but we expect people to clearly indicate their intent, which helps us better understand why they shared it. Where the intention is unclear, we may remove the content.
We allow humor and social commentary related to these topics. In addition, we believe that people are more responsible when they share this kind of commentary using their authentic identity.
Violence and Graphic Content
We remove content that glorifies violence or celebrates the suffering or humiliation of others because it may create an environment that discourages participation. We allow graphic content (with some limitations) to help people raise awareness about issues. We know that people value the ability to discuss important issues like human rights abuses or acts of terrorism. We also know that people have different sensitivities with regard to graphic and violent content. For that reason, we add a warning label to especially graphic or violent content so that it is not available to people under the age of eighteen and so that people are aware of the graphic or violent nature before they click to see it.
Adult Nudity and Sexual Activity
We restrict the display of nudity or ****ual activity because some people in our community may be sensitive to this type of content. Additionally, we default to removing ****ual imagery to prevent the sharing of non-consensual or underage content. Restrictions on the display of ****ual activity also apply to digitally created content unless it is posted for educational, humorous, or satirical purposes.
Our nudity policies have become more nuanced over time. We understand that nudity can be shared for a variety of reasons, including as a form of protest, to raise awareness about a cause, or for educational or medical reasons. Where such intent is clear, we make allowances for the content. For example, while we restrict some images of female breasts that include the nipple, we allow other images, including those depicting acts of protest, women actively engaged in breast-feeding, and photos of post-mastectomy scarring. We also allow photographs of paintings, sculptures, and other art that depicts nude figures.
As noted in Section 8 of our Community Standards (Sexual Exploitation of Adults), people use YouWoch to discuss and draw attention to ****ual violence and exploitation. We recognize the importance of and want to allow for this discussion. We draw the line, however, when content facilitates, encourages or coordinates ****ual encounters between adults. We also restrict ****ually explicit language that may lead to solicitation because some audiences within our global community may be sensitive to this type of content and it may impede the ability for people to connect with their friends and the broader community.
Cruel and Insensitive
We believe that people share and connect more freely when they do not feel targeted based on their vulnerabilities. As such, we have higher expectations for content that we call cruel and insensitive, which we define as content that targets victims of serious physical or emotional harm.
Integrity and Authenticity
We work hard to limit the spread of commercial spam to prevent false advertising, fraud, and security breaches, all of which detract from people's ability to share and connect. We do not allow people to use misleading or inaccurate information to collect likes, followers, or shares.
Authenticity is the cornerstone of our community. We believe that people are more accountable for their statements and actions when they use their authentic identities. That's why we require people to connect on YouWoch using the name they go by in everyday life. Our authenticity policies are intended to create a safe environment where people can trust and hold one another accountable.
Reducing the spread of false news on YouWoch is a responsibility that we take seriously. We also recognize that this is a challenging and sensitive issue. We want to help people stay informed without stifling productive public discourse. There is also a fine line between false news and satire or opinion. For these reasons, we don't remove false news from YouWoch but instead, significantly reduce its distribution by showing it lower in the News Feed.
When we learn that someone has passed away, we memorialize the account by adding "Remembering" above the name on the person's profile. This makes it clear that the account is now a memorial site and protects against attempted logins and fraudulent activity. We do not remove, update, or change anything about the profile or the account because we want to respect the choices someone made while still alive. We have also made it possible for people to identify a legacy contact to look after their account after they pass away. People can let us know in advance if they want their account permanently deleted when they die. We may delete profiles when the next of kin tells us that the person who passed would have preferred that we delete the account rather than memorialize it. Visit Hard Questions for more information about our memorialization policy and process.
Respecting Intellectual Property
YouWoch takes intellectual property rights seriously and believes they are important to promoting expression, creativity, and innovation in our community. You own all of the content and information you post on YouWoch, and you control how it is shared through your privacy and application settings. However, before sharing content on YouWoch, please be sure you have the right to do so. We ask that you respect other people’s copyrights, trademarks, and other legal rights. We are committed to helping people and organizations promote and protect their intellectual property rights. YouWoch’s Terms of Service do not allow people to post content that violates someone else’s intellectual property rights, including copyright and trademark. We publish information about the intellectual property reports we receive in our bi-annual Transparency Report, which can be accessed at YouWoch
We comply with:
User requests for removal of their own account Requests for removal of a deceased user’s account from a verified immediate family member or executor Requests for removal of an incapacitated user’s account from an authorized representative
Additional Protection of Minors
We comply with:
Requests for removal of an underage account Government requests for removal of child abuse imagery depicting, for example, beating by an adult or strangling or suffocating by an adult
Legal guardian requests for removal of attacks on unintentionally famous minors