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September 13, 2010
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Mature Content

Journal Entry: Mon Sep 13, 2010, 10:07 AM


Mature Content

As I'm certain most long time watchers of this space are aware, deviantART policy is not completely static and unchanging. While there are certain tenants of it which must remain, such as the bits concerning certain restrictions involving copyright, pornography, and other such severe matters, there are several policies which we have in place which we have some discretion in how they are worded and how they are enforced when necessary and we usually try to take a good hard look at them once every year or so.

This is part of the delicate balancing act we try to strike between artistic freedom and censorship; like it or not we simply can't accept everything and we're always trying to make certain that the line between what we accept and what we don't accept is in the best interests of the community as a whole.

One of these areas discretionary areas is Mature Content and in preparation for 2011 I'll be taking a good look at what should be tagged and what shouldn't be tagged and how the whole thing should be presented to you guys out there in the community.

What I would like to see during this review period is some input from the community at large - how do you use the tag? What sorts of things do you think should be tagged? When you look at something potentially offensive, such as nudity, how much is enough to justify a tag in your opinion and when do you think the work can go without?

Some other things to consider are;

Do you browse with the tag on or off? Why?

If you had the option to filter out certain types of content would you? Would it change your browsing experience?

If you could "rate" certain types of mature content on a scale of 1-10 and then elect to filter out works of a certain value or higher while viewing others would you use this option?

If you've seen any good arguments or commentary for or against certain things concerning mature content tagging can you give me links to them or invite those deviants over here to express their ideas and/or dissatisfaction?

A Step Beyond Acceptable

Now as most readers here also know, the fact that deviantART has a mature content system does not mean that we accept pornographic works.

The definition that we use to determine whether or not something should be considered to be "pornographic" or not is also something which we have just a little bit of discretion as to where we set the line.

We've fussed with this one on and off in order to ensure as much artistic freedom for people to be provocative and erotic as possible without allowing the clearly pornographic stuff.

What do you think about where the line is drawn?

Do you think it is too permissive? To restrictive?

If you don't like the current system how would you change it? What would you suggest to be done differently?

In depth discussions and opinions are welcome.

Just To Be Clear

Simply because we are doing our annual review of what we are doing on these subjects and calling for community input doesn't necessarily mean that there will be any sweeping or major changes - we are mainly looking for your opinions and suggestions on the subject and they may or may not influence the coming staff discussions but since we certainly don't have a monopoly on good ideas we'd like to know what you think on these subjects.

Petitions, ranting, and general asshattery will be ignored.

Intelligent discussions and worthwhile opinions will be noted.


  • Mood: Content
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:icongojiragirl75:
GojiraGirl75 Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2010  Student Digital Artist
from ~AHundredWingedWishes comment below:

"If you could "rate" certain types of mature content on a scale of 1-10 and then elect to filter out works of a certain value or higher while viewing others would you use this option?:
Seeing as how this can be exploited, I'm on the fence. Also, some works may be put on the more dangerous end of the scale that may not be as bad. Frankly, I'd rather have a severe art posting delay and some quality control on DA's end."

I completely agree, I think that's the best solution for DA nowadays, it may not be the most affordable solution for DA Admnis. because that means hiring more staff to accept/deny each piece being submitted everyday every second.

That would also help to keep this website free of "non-artists" (who would fit better on Photobucket/MySpace/whatever) because hopefully, after having piece after piece being denied on DA, these people would just give up, close their accounts, and move on to a porn site or wherever.

Deviant Art is much too big and famous a website now, so these people want only one thing: to be seen, and they will not follow the new rules, like they are not following now, I am so tired of seeing pieces being submitted to the wrong categories just to find its way around the rules, and I am so, SO DAMN TIRED of reporting these people and nothing is being done, I have not received ONE WORD from any DA staff about my reports, including some serious and obvious Copyright infringement, it's unbelievable:-X. So I guess that DA needs more staff starting from now...
Reply
:iconciradrak:
ciradrak Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2010
I browse with the MC flag on. -- no MC is displayed. Ppl say, 'if you're letting your kids on DA you should be there with them', well, I am. And I don't feel like bringing any extra grief and sorrow to my life by ruining their innocence.

I do find though that at least among my friends that they sometimes use the mature flag more than is necessary. That works out as we can click through and still see their drawing.

Then there are things which don't seem to get flagged correctly, surry, but some of the fetish/bondage/macabre/hardcoregore stuff makes me want to barf, let alone my little hatchlings. I vote for a slightly more complex system of filtering... but not too much more complex as that gets really cumbersome quickly. The current simple system wins there.

SO... I believe we already have a rather complex content category system in place. My wish is that I can choose which of the current categories I consider to be 'mature' in my situation. Another possible way of looking at it is as a category browsing system. I can choose that I'm simply not interested in certain categories.

I think the 1-10 rating system would be too cumbersome as we each must rate our work. My friends seem to over rate themselves into mature content when they aren't.

All this being said, DA is about art, and I don't consider nudity to necessarily be inappropriate. I do want exposure to ART (and I want to expose my children to it too), and the human body shouldn't be considered as inappropriate simply because you can see it! I believe we _need_ to see ourselves as beautiful. I don't want a set of hard and fast rules stating if you can see XXX it's inappropriate. The message is relavent to deciding appropriateness.

Also, some of the avatars are problematic. Perhaps we should use the same content system when submitting them...

I've helped in a university to address the issues of appropriateness and content filtering on the Internet in the past. So I've thought about these things. Good luck on finding the best middle ground. There is room for improvement.
Reply
:iconpolarextremesstudio:
PolarExtremesStudio Featured By Owner Sep 27, 2010  Professional Photographer
Hi

Tonight $chix0r suggested to me to leave a suggestion in comment form on this journal. $chix0r had a lengthy comment conversation on my news article - [link]

To keep my point clear and my suggestion memorable the article and the conversation with $chix0r was with one suggestion in mind, to create a separate category for photographic nudes other than “artistic nude” for the type of images that are best described as “the photo documentation of an exhibitionist / lusty lifestyle” rather than collaborations between photographers and models be they amateur / professional or hobbyist etc

The point of which is to separate images like this - [link]

From images like these - [link] and [link] and [link] and [link] and [link]

A category such as “nude scraps” “nude snapshots” to create some separation between the artistic collaborations and the genital / bend and spread snapshots would be a very beautiful thing

Thanks you for being available for comment
Reply
:iconinsifais:
Insifais Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2010
I agree with this, but must say that I don't think the second category belongs on this site at all.

I understand that definitions of what constitutes art range widely among deviants, but really think that such content is tasteless and brings down the overall dA experience.
Reply
:iconpolarextremesstudio:
PolarExtremesStudio Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2010  Professional Photographer
i am happy to see someone at your position who agrees and shares that ideal about the kind of images in question
so what can be done ?

and yes if help is required i always put my money where my mouth is ;-)
Reply
:iconahundredwingedwishes:
AHundredWingedWishes Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Do you browse with the tag on or off? Why?:

A few years ago (I have another account) I turned it off, as many of thee filtered art pieces were simply those that contained blood or mature themes. Recently I want to turn it back off due to all the nasty pieces floating around DA.

If you had the option to filter out certain types of content would you? Would it change your browsing experience?
I'd filter out clear crotch shots, as well as pieces that were linked to porn sites (which there are those out there). I'd also filter out non-artistic shots, because let's face it, it's quite clear which pieces those are. It's understandable with an artist without the means for expensive equipment trying to learn, but those are more rare than dodo birds.

If you could "rate" certain types of mature content on a scale of 1-10 and then elect to filter out works of a certain value or higher while viewing others would you use this option?:

Seeing as how this can be exploited, I'm on the fence. Also, some works may be put on the more dangerous end of the scale that may not be as bad. Frankly, I'd rather have a severe art posting delay and some quality control on DA's end.
Reply
:iconwere-were-wolfy:
were-were-wolfy Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2010
I have one account on which I upload mainly fetish pictures and therefore I usually browse without the filter on with all my accounts.
I however think I would like the option to adjust the filter. Specially to distinguish between different types of mature content. If you don't have anything against nudity, then it doesn't necessarily mean you want to see violence for example.
I would also find it practical if there would be some kind of sign when a deviation is classified as mature content and as what type it has been marked.
In the current system I don't understand why you have to choose a reason\type when marking the deviation as mature content. To my knowledge this extra information is neither used for the filter, nor is it displayed with the deviation.
I also think the categories you can choose to mark the content are hard to understand. I only recently found out that I probably tagged most of my deviations wrong.

So to summon it up.
1) Make easier to identify categories for uploading deviations.
2) Make a small icon which shows on the deviation page when the deviation has been tagged and what it has been tagged for.
3) Make the filter adjustable for the different categories.

That's just my two cents.

Anna
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:icononinoshiko:
oninoshiko Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I love this suggestion.

Having more fined-grained controls about what type of content, and expressing what is in it more accurately, rather then just the rather generic "mature" seems like a win for everyone.

From my perspective, I am not looking to "trick" anyone into seeing anything they don't want. For those looking to find what is on my page (for the life of me, I don't know who that is or why they want to find it) I would expect it to make it easier for them to find.

Oninoshiko.
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:iconannajordanart:
annajordanart Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2010  Hobbyist Artist
On/Off?
I browse with the tag off because I primarily look at Body Art.
filtering certain types?
No because I feel its partially my responsibility to suggest/report deviations that need a mature filter on or just need to plain be removed.
rating mature content
It is a difficult topic as different countries/states have different laws in terms of what is and isn't acceptable depending on age, etc. For example, as part of the Body Art group I help run we can't allow certain themes or body parts because of where one of our main individuals lives. And we don't want him to get into trouble or face charges etc.
This needs to take into consideration things like Body Art, Fetish Photography, etc. I mean, in some sense, it might make sense to filter off entire sections of dA to the younger individuals. I know its not 'fair' to age discriminate, but this is more about safety and what is suitable to be seen.
As for rating... I do think it would be a good idea as the mature filter concept can be a bit cloudy in terms of certain things. Such as if I were to photograph a dead bird, I wouldn't want to upset younger individuals, but it doesn't have any gore or anything like that. Y'see? Tricky, as every deviation is individual =]

Hope this helps!
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:iconilantiis:
iLantiis Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Do you browse with the tag on or off? Why?
Off. I love all kinds of art, and I don't search for art I don't want to see.

If you had the option to filter out certain types of content would you? Would it change your browsing experience?
Wouldn't change my experience. I wouldn't use it.

If you could "rate" certain types of mature content on a scale of 1-10 and then elect to filter out works of a certain value or higher while viewing others would you use this option?
That will cause a problem. What one person rates as porn may not be the same rating as another person.

What do you think about where the line is drawn?
I just think the policies should be enforced. Right now, if you look at the policies the way they are written, they are not being enforced.

Do you think it is too permissive? Too restrictive?
Neither. The policies are find, great actually. They just aren't enforced. If policy dictates that child-likenesses are not to be shown in a mature way, why is [link] allowed? Doesn't make any sense except that the policies are just there as eye-candy and don't actually mean anything.

If you don't like the current system how would you change it? What would you suggest to be done differently?
Just follow your own policies, and if you aren't going to follow them and enforce them equally, remove them. It'll help either way.
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