Scruff has banned all photos of jockstraps, underwear or bikini-style clothes in a new update.
This is to comply with the policies of app stores hosting the app. One of them removed Scruff earlier this year.
On Wednesday (23 January), users received a pop-up message when they opened the app. It read: ‘Profile photo guidelines are changing. To comply with platform policies, photos in underwear, jockstraps or bikini style bathing suits are no longer permitted in profile photos.’
The ban is exclusive to profile photos, so the thirst traps can still be shared in private albums and photos.
Originally hugging and kissing were banned
Speaking to Out magazine, CEO Eric Silverberg ruled out the influence of the SESTA and FOSTA legislation. The laws were intended to crack down on internet sex traffickers but some are blaming for a rise in censorship in queer spaces.
For example, Tumblr’s removal from the Apple Store for breaching their guidelines has meant the wholesale removal of thousands of pieces of LGBTI content.
Silverberg told the site: ‘Our change is meant to align our content standards with the evolving content standards of our app store distributors.’
However, the initial ban was much more harsh. Alongside the nearly nude photo ban, pictures of people hugging and kissing were also banned.
This has now softened, with only ‘sexually suggestive’ hugging banned.
Silverberg wrote in an update: ‘Given that Scruff is a community that speaks openly and positively about sex, bodies, and intimacy, some feel that such policies are at odds with those values.
‘Such criticism is not unfounded. Scruff respects the concerns voiced by our community on this matter, and we encourage everyone to continue to hold us and all tech companies, accountable for the content and conduct standards we enforce.’
The app’s main competitor, Grindr, also has a ban on underwear and crotch shots.