tumblr ban pro-ana websites
Tumblr banned pro-ana websites from its blog roll this week. The thing with pro-ana websites is that most girls never even hear about them until they do get banned from blogs or search engines. So what exactly is a pro-ana website?
A pro-ana website is one that promotes anorexia. Some pro-ana sites use the glorified description of being “thinspirational.” Pro-ana and pro-mia (short for “pro-bulimia”) pages give sick girls tips on how to be sicker. They offer ways to resist food, post photos of skeletal women (literally — you can usually see their bones), and serve as a constant reminder that their readers can always be thinner — and that thinner is better.
While it’s easy to say that most girls aren’t affected by sites like this, that’s not necessarily true. If you’re exposed to something enough, it becomes normal to you. Even Demi Lovato, as successful and beautiful as she is, succumbed to an eating disorder until going into treatment last year and has spoken out about how being insensitive to the issue makes it worse. (She’s even documenting her recovery for MTV!)
Pro-ana websites are dangerous, period. They are designed by sick people to not only spread their sickness, but worsen it in themselves and others. 20% of people diagnosed with long-term anorexia will die from the effects of the disease. Pro-ana websites can prolong and worsen anorexia — as in, they can be potentially lethal.Imagine for a second that you’re a heroin addict. You’re trying to kick the habit, so you search online for something like “heroin addict support” and click on a link you’d think was a site for rehabilitation and getting better. Only it turns out to be photos of smack, places to find out, and new ways to get high from it. That’s dangerous. That’s damaging. And that’s not much different from a pro-ana website.
Another example (and another type of site that tumblr banned): If a person was suicidal and searching online for help — say, she typed in “suicide help” — and instead of support phone numbers and hotlines, she accidentally clicked on a link describing the best way to tie rope, that’s dangerous. That’s damaging. And that also is not much different from a pro-ana website.
Essentially, tumblr banned pro-ana websites from their blog roll because they fall under the category of “self-harm.” And they’re right. While many supporters of pro-ana websites have come out against tumblr for what they perceive as infringement on their free speech, what they fail to realize is that in those “terms of service” a lot of us don’t actually read are clauses that allow tumblr to do things like this.
The problem is that proponents of pro-ana websites see themselves as helping. They think they’re helping girls by giving them tips on the best way to throw up their dinner without rupturing her esophagi. They think they’re helping girls by telling them that “nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.” But what they’re actually doing is killing themselves and their readers slowly. You already know that anorexia is deadly. Tumblr banned pro-ana websites because they don’t want blood on their hands and they want girls to get healthy. That’s a stance we can get behind.
Do you agree with tumblr banning pro-ana websites? Do you think it’s a good idea, or do you think it violates free speech? Tell us your views on tumblr banning pro-ana websites in the comments!
Want To Read More About Body Confidence? Here You Go!
tumblr ban pro-ana websites