Before last week the Instagram account @MeghanTonjes had a few hundred likes. Today it has more than 35,000.

Ironically, Meghan’s increased following isn’t due to the images currently on her Instagram page; it’s because of the one that’s not up there.

The picture in question being Meghan's underwear-covered bum, accompanied with the hashtag #bootyrevolution.

Within hours, it had mysteriously been removed by Instagram, for allegedly flouting the company’s ‘mature content rules’.

Those are the same mature content rules that permit every celebrity from Rihanna to Miley Cyrus – not to mention hundreds of models – to post outrageously revealing selfies of themselves on a daily basis.




  A recent Instagram post from model Jen Selter, whose bum selfies have accrued over 3 million followers.

 

Within hours of Meghan’s image being removed, the internet had its knickers in a twist, with most arguing that the picture had been taken down solely because of the size of Miss Tonjes’ buttocks, not due to how revealing the shot was.

In a similair, slightly more high profile case, Scout Willis, daughter of the baldy, vest wearing action-slinger Bruce Willis, saw her Instagram deleted after she posted a snap of a particularly booblicious T-Shirt.

An act that spurred her to protest Instagram's shockingly strict nudity rules by strolling through the streets of New York topless and posting the pictures here, and here on the decidedly less censored, Twitter. Rihanna then retweeted the snaps and the world went censorship mental.

And rightly so, because when it comes to censorship, Instagram has got it all wrong.

If you read the company’s small print, it says that any account found to be ‘sharing nudity or mature content will be disabled and your access to Instagram may be discontinued’. And what constitutes ‘mature content’? Any photo which ‘you wouldn’t show to a child, your boss, or your parents.’

We’re not sure about you, but there are a hell of a lot of images we wouldn’t want to show to our boss or a six-year-old (your dad is a whole other story). But does that mean they’re sexually explicit, or that they shouldn’t be posted? Hell no.

There are huge double standards at play here. You can switch on MTV at 8am in the morning and watch Miley Cyrus or Katy swinging naked on wrecking balls or romping around in their pants while you munch on your cornflakes with your family.

Of course there should be boundaries; but the problem is that the boundaries aren’t clear. Take the latest promotional poster for Sin City, starring a scantily clad Eva Green, which has just been banned in the US by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) regulatory body for being too sexually explicit.

 

Is this really any more sexually explicit than Vogue’s naked-with-meat Lady Gaga cover, or Rihanna’s topless front cover for French magazine Lui? No.




What’s even more bizarre is that often the big social media players seem less bothered about stuff that really needs to be censored than the occasional flash of buttock. First, it was Facebook allowing beheadings to be posted, and now it appears Instagram is following suit. Despite its stringent rules on the exposure of bum flesh, here’s what the company has to say about more extreme, violent content:

“If you are reported for sharing prohibited or illegal content, including photographs or videos of extreme violence or gore, your account may be disabled.”

The crucial word there is ‘may’. If you post a picture of a nipple, your account will be disabled. But everything else is on a case-by-case basis.

This is wrong. It can’t be one rule for some and another for everyone else. In the same way, it’s not fair for Rihanna’s butt-cheeks to be all over Instagram and Meghan’s to be taken down, just because they’re less famous, or less pert.

FHM says it’s time to take a stand, to keep Instagram sexy, and to keep it free.

Words by Dan Jude. Follow him on Twitter: @danjudeFHM