Please e-mail your letter to firstname.lastname@example.org with ‘Dominic Scaia’s account’ in the subject line.
I am writing in regards to the banning of Dominic Scaia’s account. Dominic has been a Facebook member for three years and adhered to all regulations. He is a transgendered man who recently underwent surgery as part of his transition. His account was disabled on December 20th, 2009 after he posted pictures that showed his bare post-operative chest. These photos were on an account identified as male. They included his torso and head and did not feature any gore as they were taken three weeks after the surgery.
According to Facebook’s Terms of Service section 3.7, photos will not be “hateful, threatening, pornographic” or contain “nudity or graphic or gratuitous violence”. How did these photos breach those categories? We hope that this was an unintentional error or overreaction by a Facebook staff member and not a reflection of the company’s larger views on transidentified people. As Dominic’s correspondence to Facebook have gone unanswered, we do not know the exact reason for his account being disabled.
According to 15.1 of the ToS “The laws of the State of California will govern this Statement” “without regard to conflict of law provisions”. California has laws protecting against discrimination due to gender identity. Dominic could take this case to court, but we hope that the situation can be resolved without doing so.
We demand that you reinstate Dominic’s account immediately and offer him a sincere apology, publicly and privately, for the weeks he’s been without the service. We ask that Facebook policy becomes more trans-friendly (if possible, relying on a transgendered person for guidance). We also request that the employee responsible for banning Dominic’s account be reprimanded and ideally he/she and all Facebook employees undergo training to better serve the needs of Facebook’s diverse community.
Facebook has been a great benefit to the LGBTQ community and it would be sad to see them move to another site because they do not feel safe and included on Facebook. A Facebook Group in support of reinstating Dominic’s account now has a few thousand members in only four days. It continues to grow rapidly. Many community organizations have been alerted to this issue and media outlets are pursuing this story.
I look forward to your response and will be following up if I do not hear back promptly from Facebook on this issue.
(Your name, city, region)