Today I had an image removed that was heavily censored criticism of DeviantArt allowing porn onto the website.
All it showed was the characters heads (No seriously it was just only their face and hair and the DA report ticket).
I was upset because the original image had not been removed but my image was censored, but I was kind of ok with this because I thought "oh hey I guess they are cracking down on porn and I reposted it technically even if censored."
But after looking into after someone told me their friend got banned for this even though they posted only one image of nude art. (Art that is allowed on the site that only requires a basic mature tag even under their policy)
I found a horrifying discovery that it turns out other people all across Deviantart are being flagged and banned for art that has NO sexual content at all!
What is even worse is that the banned users did not get banned after three strikes but randomly!
Some even had an account banned after just posting one image that has no sexual content.
There is no way to ensure a proper appeal to get unbanned for this random spree of false flaggings either because depending on which admin you get some will just see you have images that have a 404 and keep the ban on permanently.
My theory is that Deviantart has installed a new robot to sort and remove content in the same vein as youtube so the admins do not have to review tickets as much or offending content.
And just like youtube it is removing content that doesn't violate policy.
EDIT July 8th: I looked into it more there are three possible theories for this occurring so don't freak out it might not be a robot so there is a way to fix it if it is just abuse in the system.
I will post evidence below once I compiled it all but I will showcase the theories down below and link the evidence once all gathered for each theory to find out what the possible issue actually is.
I apologize for jumping to the conclusion first that it was a robot, I saw the evidence of users being removed and banned for images first before I saw the rest of the testimonies and evidence that came out when I made this from users reaching out.
I apologize for the reactionary response but I will show evidence once compiled down below of reasons to each theory.
Theory One: People are Abusing the Mature Flagging System
There evidence of this being the case long before December because when I looked around I saw journals and stuff incouraging to ban users and they normally get banned due to such high amounts of people demanding it.
But I also have seen when looking around users have gotten images removed that had strict mature tags that were nudity because a user repeatedly reported said image.
A case of this is from a user named Serbella who has a user named YukiHatesYou repeatedly spam the report button until the image was removed and it worked as you can see in the comments of them fighting with this user about it.
MY ART GOT REMOVEDWhoever reported it
I WORKED HARD ON THAT COMMISSION
Also DA staff, make sure to do your job properly and read your own rules:
Nudity: If your work contains nudity, revealing the genitalia of a model or character or revealing a full female breast including nipples, you should assign this tag.Sexual Themes: References to sex or overt sexuality, including sexually based humor. This category also covers images in which the character or model has taken a sexually provocative pose.Violence/Gore: This refers to overtly realistic bloody or violent imagery, generally associated with horror and macabre, but can also apply to photojournalism or written work.Strong Language: Can be applied to deviations containing profanity, vulgarity, and otherwise coarse or offensive language at the discretion of the submitter.Ideologically Sensitive: If your work may be construed as offensive toward a person or a group of people due to a religious
A testimony from my own comments show how easily a user can be removed if reported enough
Testimony from a user named PastelKittyPrincess tells a story of how their images were easily removed for being "sexual," because the mature system is that easily able to be abused by people who harass other users.
A user based on colbatpie got banned from massive flagging for " underaged mature content," the images are not mature in any sense and are of a fan character for the user aged 23.
Theory Two: Outsider Spam Bots are False Flagging users Randomly
Theory Three: Deviantart has an Auto Detect System that goes based on tags or something to remove offending content
I think it might be tags or titles because this had "mature," in the title and no one was upset I even posted the image asking devaintart "hey why did you allow porn on the website?" But the actual images only shows the ticket the only the faces of the image I was pointing out and it got removed months after I posted it, but the original image didn't and even by staff was deemed not to be porn.
But notice for my ticket unlike scarlet the offending image does not have a reason in the policy for why it was removed, it was just deemed unacceptable.
No "mature content," violation or any policy given unlike above with scarlet this image, it was removed for no reason which makes me think either this was just dinged by a system or an admin might of not liked someone pointing that out.
Sense the title has "mature," in it I think it more likely automated because recent images I looked into also had common keywords in them like "nudity," or "mature," before affected
There is evidence that Da is trying to crack down on all mature content but it might be based on key words because even nudity is getting affected when it has the word "censored," in the title or description.
That the only word I been able to link to when nudity gets flagged but other images I am not sure of
Testimony of a user getting a mature tag put on their image that reason was never given was over the image I will show below along with their statement.
The "offending," image that was flagged but statement as to why was never given.
Theory Four: Some Staff are Removing and Abusing the System.
The reason I bring this up is that people have been banned from this website for weird reasons by staff.
Two users so far that lead me to this theory was Librotimes and their sister Nickia5775 who were banned instantly for an offense never stated other than "unacceptable activity," with no message showing the offending messages.
DA Banned My Sister!!!!!Hello, my friends!
My sister Nickia5775 is BANNED from DA! She didn't do ANYTHING wrong! And guess what? Here's the "reason why" (she was given a note before she was banned) : “Unacceptable activity while making use of secondary accounts” ....
NOW, HOLD ON, HOLD ON, FOR A SEC...
I AM NICKIA'S BROTHER! AND YOU DA STAFF ARE BANNING HER FOR NO-GOOD REASON??????? NICKIA DOES NOT MAKE USE OF ACCOUNTS FOR HORRIBLE THINGS! I'VE WATCHED OVER HER ACCOUNT FOR MONTHS!!!!
What is this? Hate? As for all of her watchers, you guys know that she is a good and talented person, who DOES NOT steal art/create multiple accounts for bad things/spam another deviant/criticise people/etc.
I noted an admin of DA, and I hope she'll respond.
I'm going to try my best to tag all of her friends to get this message through:
xXTwilightSamuraiXx Cocoa-comic81 Squira130 wintermermaids3 LadyMosiacSlime lilpinkbunnyrabbit HalieCakes33443 Hearty-Chann CranberryMarmalade @QuasiQu
I looked into this and "unacceptable activity," doesn't make sense because I checked these users and the Nickia was an adoptable account that only ever posted animal images that were not explicit and from looking around had no history of abusing users.
Thier brother got banned also for ban evasion even though these were not the same accounts and the reasoning didn't make sense.
Ways to Fix these Issues
Theory One and Two Solutions:
1. Prevent mass false flaggings by a certain amount an image is flagged have a real admin review it
2. Make the banning system a three strike system like Youtube and allow appeals if falsely flagged for an image.
3. If an account is doing so many flaggings at once, make a system that stops them after 10 and reviews what they flagged with a real admin before being able to flag anything else
4. If the same user is repeatedly flagging a user more than three times have an admin review those offending images also.
5. Have more than one admin review and discuss the removal of an image if approved just to make certain there is no bias affecting any of the decisions.
6. Make all ticket reports are not easliy able to just remove an image automactically due to many users report it at once.
Theory Three Solutions:
1. Remove the bot and have it reconfigured to fix the issue from randomly flagging users
2. If one doesn't work remove the bot entirely
3. If unable to remove the robot tell users what tags or other things cause the random flaggings and bans to help users avoid the bot for no offending images or posts.
Theory Four Solutions:
1. Have more than one admins approve of any banning or removal actions
2. Continued behavior should lead to them being stripped of their admin abilities and banned if they continue to harass or try to false flag users.
3. All actions by said staff will be reviewed again and if found abusing their power undone and notify the party affected of this situation.
4. Make a system that shows users the offending statements and everything that leads to a ban to help ban appeals if flasely accused.