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POPULAR BLOGGING SITE RESTRICTS USE OF BREASTFEEDING PHOTOS: LiveJournal cites breastfeeding images [May. 31st, 2006|06:15 pm]
milo ryan spoering

May 31,2006

Carrie Patterson
Executive Director, ProMoM.Org

Popular Blogging Site Restricts Use of Breastfeeding Photos
LiveJournal cites breastfeeding images as 'inappropriate' and sends mothers to the virtual restroom

Women on the popular blog site LiveJournal are calling foul at the company’s decision to brand images of breastfeeding as ‘inappropriate.’ Many users of the site have joined together to urge LiveJournal’s parent company SixApart to address their concerns and reevaluate the policy.

Small "userpics" of no more than 100 by 100 pixels represent LiveJournal members throughout the site. Users can define one of these icons as "default icon" which plugs it into the user's public profile. These default icons were originally not permitted to be ‘sexually explicit or graphically violent.’ Recently, icons which depicted breastfeeding were cited as being ‘inappropriate’ by the LiveJournal abuse team, a group of volunteers who monitor complaints on the site. After clarification was requested, LiveJournal changed their FAQ to reflect a no nudity rule and is claiming that icons with visible areola or nipple are not permitted. Whether or not areola is visible in a photograph is dependent on a number of factors, including skin tone of the mother and physical changes during pregnancy.

Claimed Live Journal Abuse Staffer 'Erin' in a post on the site, "That's really a matter for the FCC to decide. LiveJournal's policies on this mirror what would be allowed on primetime TV or in a PG-13 movie." However, this is not true. The FCC does not consider the act of breastfeeding on television to fall under the definitions of indecency or obscenity.

Breastfeeding is exempt from nudity laws throughout the United States as well as countries such as Canada. Advocates are urging LiveJournal to adopt the same criteria. "It is regrettable that LiveJournal has chosen to target breastfeeding mothers instead of standing up for the protection provided them by law," says Carrie Patterson, executive director of ProMom.org, a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing public awareness and public acceptance of breastfeeding. Advocates state that the feeling that breastfeeding should be hidden only fosters the idea that the natural act of nourishing a child is scandalous.

Breastfeeding bloggers who have refused to change their default icon have been suspended from the site. These users, as well as others questioning the policy, have been treated poorly by the site’s volunteer abuse team, something that is not unusual according to other site users.

More than 1,000 LiveJournal users complained, and SixApart issued an apology to the group. However, the company refuses to consider modifying their policy and continues to suspend users whose default icons are deemed inappropriate. Although LiveJournal stated a clarified rule, mothers are still reporting major inconsistencies in its application.

The breastfeeding debacle is only the most recent in a long line of incidents that have people wondering if the abuse procedures as a whole should be reviewed for fairness and propriety. Complaints have been raised about users' privacy, inconsistent enforcement of the Terms of Service, conflicting information and responses from abuse team members, and discourteous replies to users seeking clarification on the rules.

Activists are now working together to get this policy changed and to clarify the policies and procedures of the LiveJournal abuse team. While some are refusing to continue paying for the service, others have moved to different journaling websites to protest what they feel is a violation of their rights. For more information, contact Carrie Patterson at 678-513-6329 or carrie@promom.org or visit http://www.promom.org/bf_info/mp.html.

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hhmmm, we need a new icon! [Feb. 9th, 2006|10:18 am]
milo ryan spoering
[mood |chipperchipper]

the m-man went for his last visit with the midwife (*sniffle*) yesterday. we weighed him-- what a monster! he's 11lb. 14oz at just 6 weeks! k was just 12lb at 2 months! what a big boy!
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oops, late announcement! [Dec. 31st, 2005|06:00 pm]
milo ryan spoering
[mood |ecstaticecstatic]

he's here!
milo ryan spoering
born december 28, 2005 at 7:16pm
9 pounds, 21.5 inches long
everyone is doing great!
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40 weeks [Dec. 24th, 2005|10:17 pm]
milo ryan spoering
[mood |tiredtired]

The last week (or is it?). The average size newborn is 7.5 pounds and 20 inches long. At this point, most of the vernix is gone, 15% of the body is fat and the chest sticks out.

this is the last update they have. what the hell am i supposed to post NEXT week when i'm STILL pregnant?!
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39 weeks [Dec. 18th, 2005|12:02 pm]
milo ryan spoering
[mood |crankycranky]

Most of the lanugo is gone as the baby prepares for its final womb days. The lungs are maturing and surfactant production is increasing.
The baby can't move too much anymore as its womb space has become very crowded.
The average size baby is over seven pounds at this point.
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38 weeks [Dec. 10th, 2005|09:26 pm]
milo ryan spoering
[mood |hyperhyper]

The baby may be gaining an ounce a day now. His/her intestines are accumulating lots of meconium (baby's first bowel movement). The circumference of the head and the baby's abdomen are about the same size.
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37 weeks [Dec. 3rd, 2005|09:22 pm]
milo ryan spoering
[mood |exhaustedexhausted]

Average size is around 6.5 pounds now! The baby practices breathing movements preparing for life outside the womb. His/her grasp becomes firm, and s/he will turn toward light.
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midwife home visit [Nov. 30th, 2005|01:06 pm]
milo ryan spoering
[mood |excitedexcited]

36 (and a half, technically) week home visit today. we live about 3 blocks from jan and directly north (several miles) from dana, so they knew exactly where we are (not like it's hard with only 3 houses on the block). we went over emergency hospital transfer information and directions as to when to call them, along with a handy "what to do if the midwives don't make it" sheet (i've read enough about unassisted, i'm not worried). newborn procedures-- we said no to the eye ointment, yes to oral vit k, no to needing info on circ, discussed plans to delay vax. they left a birth tub with us which is currently living in the backyard because it won't fit in here unless we fold up the dining table (which is the plan for the actual birth).
blood pressure fine, urine a little dark which makes no sense because i drank so much damn water today already it should have looked like water, baby's heartrate around 140s, as usual. loa, in the 6lb range at this point and both the midwives think s/he'll be over 8 pounds. measuring 38cm, 1.5 cm ahead which actually puts me consistant with the due date from my lmp (dec. 15), so we'll see when i go!
the raised rash on my belly is due to my scratching my stretchmarks and creating a dermatitis there. ugh. they gave me several soothing reccomendations and told me NOT TO SCRATCH. the rash is already spreading, i don't think i could stand having a larger area itching.
i need to call cascade and yell at them about two herbs i ordered that were backordered and still haven't arrived almost a month later. apparently another client ordered her birth kit two WEEKS ago and hasn't recieved it-- i ordered mine on the 7th and got it mere days later. sounds like they're fucking up as the month goes along.
everything is washed and we're installing the carseat this weekend. we're ready to have this sucker!
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36 weeks [Nov. 26th, 2005|05:20 pm]
milo ryan spoering
[mood |hungryhungry]

With four weeks to go, our baby is almost ready. S/he could drop into the birth canal at any time now. This week, the fat is dimpling on the elbows and knees as well as forming creases in the neck and wrists. The baby's gums are very rigid.
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35 weeks [Nov. 20th, 2005|05:55 pm]
milo ryan spoering
[mood |hungryhungry]

The average sized baby is around five and a half pounds now! The fat accumulations plump up the arms and legs this week. The baby has gotten big enough to take up most of the uterus, and there's less room to move around. The testes have completed their descent in males.
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