The Facebook group ‘Bad Girls Advice‘ has found itself at the centre of controversy after controversy since it began in 2016. Allegations that the group condoned violence against men, male body shaming and was the female-driven version of the equally problematic group ‘Bloke’s Advice‘ have been plaguing it since the beginning.
Now, the founder of the group, Amy (or ‘Queen Amy’, as some of the members call her), has given an interview to Triple J Hack, explaining and defending some of the controversies that have plagued her group.
She claims that BGA was not shut down for the bestiality post, going on to defend the post as not technically in breach of FB’s community standards.
Speaking to Hack’s Tom Tilley, she said:
“BGA was not shut down for the bestiality incident at all. We spoke to Facebook and we were not removed for that post, in fact there was nothing wrong, technically, with that post [in terms of] Facebook’s community guidelines, because this post was not of a sexual nature, it was just a woman holding up a sign. Her words on it may have been [sexual in nature], but that doesn’t go against Facebook’s community standards.”
When we reported on the bestiality post last month, a member of the group forwarded us screenshots of the post in question.
BGA has a ‘scroll past’ rule, to keep the peace with some of their more controversial posts (and Amy says that with hundreds of posts per day, there’s bound to be a few you don’t like). If you don’t agree with it, don’t comment – just scroll past it instead.
But the bestiality post pushed the limits for some members.
BGA removed the post, but Facebook shut the group down anyway.
However, it was reinstated a few days later, after Facebook went through the group and removed any offending posts.
“We weren’t reinstated because we did anything, we were reinstated because they [Facebook] went back through the page, realised there was nothing wrong with it, removed the posts that may have not gone on community guidelines, and gave us back our page.
“To me, that shows there’s a lot of people that want to get it shut down because of this negative image, for whatever their personal reasons may be, to discredit the group, because they don’t like me personally, they don’t like the admin, they don’t like how confident the girls are – whatever. This group is a really, really important place for women, and we ain’t leaving.”
One of the other major controversies this interview addressed was the nude sharing of photos of BGA members with Bloke’s Advice, a group notorious for posting stolen nude images (without consent, obvs).
Amy says this controversy was blown out of proportion, but in the same breath, defended Bloke’s Advice as a group that does “amazing work for men in Australia” and said one of its “biggest problems” was the practise of members stealing and posting nudes, and harassing the subjects.
“Not only would they post it with their names and faces, but then they would also delve in to their workplaces, their families, their profiles, their contact information. These girls were receiving nasty messages, offensive messages, unsolicited pics of their genitals, and you know, just real sleezy stuff.
“We realised we needed to make some sort of partnership with Bloke’s Advice to try and prevent this from happening, so we had a chat with the admin, and we said, ‘If we can get you some examples of what you can post, can you make sure the rest of them look like this?’ And they said ‘Yep, no worries, send us some pictures, cut out what you need cut out and we’ll make sure that’s how it rolls on’.”
Amy says they got permission from the owners of all the pics they sent across.
“Those girls, [the nudes were] just of their butts, so they didn’t care. ‘As long as they can’t tell who I am, I don’t mind.’ And from then on, it was clear how it needed to run. And it worked. They [Bloke’s Advice] stopped posting pictures that were stolen, stopped posting contact information, and if they did post contact information, as I understand it, Bloke’s Advice administration did remove those members.”
It’s worth noting that although Amy says in that last quote that Bloke’s Advice stopped sharing “stolen” pictures, nothing in her interview backs this claim. It actually sounds like the only change they affected was to stop Bloke’s Advice sharing nudes that identified the woman in them. Worthy, sure, but hardly the crux of the issue that is sharing explicit, non-consensual photos.
You can listen to the full interview here.