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Facebook Removes ‘Feeling Fat’ Emoji in Response to User Petition

TMS commenters' "feeling phat" suggestion is still not an option, but I'll keep you posted.

Screenshot 2015-03-11 at 10.53.23 AM

In an apparent response to a user petition asking Facebook to remove the ‘feeling fat’ emoji and acknowledge that ‘fat is not a feeling,’ the company announced yesterday that it would be removing the controversial option from the site:

We’ve heard from our community that listing ‘feeling fat’ as an option for status updates could reinforce negative body image, particularly for people struggling with eating disorders. So we’re going to remove ‘feeling fat’ from the list of options. We’ll continue to listen to feedback as we think about ways to help people express themselves on Facebook.

The petition was the work of 24-year-old student Catherine Weingarten and the nonprofit Endangered Bodies, and received 16,771 signatures. In a post to the petition website yesterday, Weingarten wrote

I’m thrilled that [Facebook] decided to remove the ‘feeling fat’ emoji. This success shows us that people together can challenge the cultural messages that are so damaging to our ability to love ourselves and live comfortably in our bodies. As someone who struggled with body image, I feel so happy that I’ve helped eliminate one form of body shaming hatred on the internet.

A ‘feeling stuffed’ emoji (which bears a strong resemblance to the ‘feeling fat’ option) is still available, as is ‘feeling ugly.’

Facebook still has a long way to go in terms of listening to its community (especially in regards to the site’s restrictive ‘real name’ policy), but the company’s response to this petition and the recent addition of suicide prevention tools and a more sensitive system of handling the accounts of deceased users are encouraging steps in the right direction.

What do you think, friends?

(via The Verge)

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