Mark Zuckerberg has reversed his decision on censoring the iconic war photo after Norwegian Prime Minister lambasted the Facebook CEO. The controversy began when Facebook deleted the post of Norwegian news writer Tom Egeland working for the Aftenposten paper.
The grounds for removal was that Egeland's piece contained a photograph of a nude 9-year old fleeing from a napalm strike.
Since its publication, the said photo - The Terror of War - has received worldwide recognition and accolades deeming it as one of the images that "shaped world history." However, the photograph violated Facebook's terms and agreement regarding nudity and the need to censor should it be placed on the social media platform.
Shortly after the piece have been posted, the article was deleted and Egeland was subsequently suspended from Facebook. The newspaper also received a letter from the company with the instruction of pixelating the image or removing it entirely.
In response, Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg posted the iconic image on her own page as a form of protest. That, too, was taken down as well. Solberg then uploaded a censored version of the photo along with this sentiment:
"While I was on a plane from Oslo to Trondheim, Facebook deleted a post from my Facebook page," she said. "What Facebook does by removing images of this kind, good as the intentions may be, is to edit our common history."
After getting wind of the controversy, Norwegians started posting the war photo on their platform and a wave of criticism followed directed at Facebook.
Aftenposten, in its editorial, also wrote that the company should be able to tell the difference between child pornography and iconic war photographs.
"While we recognize that this photo is iconic, it's difficult to create a distinction between allowing a photograph of a nude child in one instance and not others," a company spokesperson wrote.
"We try to find the right balance between enabling people to express themselves while maintaining a safe and respectful experience for our global community. Our solutions won't always be perfect, but we will continue to try to improve our policies and the ways in which we apply them."
While there is merit to what Facebook is trying to point out, its censorship does infringe on the right of freedom of speech. As it stands, the company has since reversed their decision and allowed the image to be posted without being pixelated.