Facebook Censors Woman's Life-Saving Cancer Awareness Photo -- Because ZOMG Nipple!

A woman with terminal breast cancer recently had a photo censored on Facebook for the craziest reason. Rowena Kincaid posted a picture of an unusual warning sign for breast cancer, with the hope that it might save someone's life. She was both shocked and disheartened to discover that the social media site took the photo down -- because her nipple was clearly visible.

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You know, because nipples are always sexy, even when they're used as a potentially life-saving PSA about cancer. 

Kincaid, 40, posted a photo of her right breast, which was partially covered in a rash. She wanted women to know that breast cancer can present itself in unexpected ways, and a rash can be a warning sign. She wrote, "Any rash on the breast [or] chest that doesn't go away, or seems to be growing should be investigated."

The activist is currently suffering from secondary stage-four breast cancer. She was initially diagnosed in October 2013, and given three to six months to live. She clearly defied those expectations, but her health has taken a significant downturn recently.

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Since her diagnosis, Ms. Kincaid has made a BBC documentary, Before I Kick the Bucket, and runs a Facebook page by the same name with over 10,000 likes. She has openly shared her journey about living with terminal cancer, and has become a resource to people wanting to learn more about it.

After she posted the "offensive" photo, it quickly gained 72,000 "impressions" within two hours. That same day, it was taken down by Facebook for violating the code of practice. Because nipple.

I'm sorry, but what? Has Facebook seen some of the crap posted all over, from sexy to lewd to crass? But, you know, maybe that's freedom of expression. But if a mom is breastfeeding, or if a woman dying of cancer tries to share some valuable, potentially life-saving information, all of a sudden nipples are scary.

That's insane. Kincaid shared that she's become a specialist in her own disease, and that she never knew before experiencing it that a rash can be a sign of breast cancer. She said, "I woke up last weekend and thought, 'I have a rash on my breast and I'm going to die. If I don't share this, it will die with me.'"

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Personally, I had no idea a rash could indicate cancer either, and it's something I'm going to remember from here on out. How many women would ignore a rash for too long before finally seeking medical advice? Cancer can spread fast, people, and the sooner it's caught, the better the chance of treating it successfully.

Kincaid confessed that it wasn't easy for her to post such a personal photo, but I'd be willing to guess it had more to do with sharing her disease than the actual nipple. She said, "Posting that photograph was the bravest thing I've done. It's so personal; I was petrified. The fact is it is a shot of a human body part with a disease. If I had cancer in my big toe and had posted a picture to show what it looked like would they take that down?"

Probably not.

 

Image via © Wavebreakmedia LTD/Wavebreak Media Ltd./Corbis

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