NEW YORK— Don’t Delete Art (DDA)—a collaborative initiative uniting advocacy groups and artists in the defense of artistic freedom online—held A Day of Action today in New York City and online. The actions are an extension of the group’s Manifesto campaign, which urges social media companies to integrate artistic perspectives into content moderation policies. The day’s activities are documented on Instagram at @dontdelete.art.
Don’t Delete Art Manifesto is bringing together members of the art community to demand that artists and arts professionals are prioritized as major stakeholders in social media content regulation, and that social media companies reconsider existing restrictions on artistic content, review alleged violations, and create better appeals and notifications processes. The campaign has been endorsed by artists, curators, arts educators, gallerists, museums, and other institutions in over 89 countries.
Our manifesto demands that social media companies—especially Meta, which is the parent company of the social media platforms most widely used by artists—do more to incorporate artistic perspectives into the establishment and enforcement of Community and Recommendations Guidelines. It calls attention to the overly restrictive and unclear Recommendations Guidelines used by Meta to withhold content from Search and Explore functions, as well as hashtags. It criticizes algorithmic errors that result in the removal of work, account deletion, suppression of reach, and loss of followers among artists. Inconsistent and opaque notifications and appeals processes hold many artists hostage, encouraging many to not just censor their work for the platform, but withhold entire bodies of work so that their posts can be “recommended.”
Founded in 2020, Don’t Delete Art (www.dontdelete.art) is a collaborative initiative focused on protecting artistic expression across online platforms. Its online Gallery displays art that is suppressed by or removed from social media platforms; its Resources aid artists in navigating the current terms of social media censorship; and its Blog and Newsletters provide analysis of new censorship trends and policy changes. DDA is formed by the National Coalition Against Censorship’s Art & Culture Advocacy Program, PEN America’s Artists at Risk Connection, Freemuse, and artist-activists Savannah Spirit, Spencer Tunick, and Emma Shapiro. Instagram: @dontdelete.art | Facebook: facebook.com/dontdeleteart
Further campaign details are available at www.dontdelete.art on Instagram @dontdelete.art.
The National Coalition Against Censorship’s Art & Culture Advocacy Program is the only national project dedicated to working directly with individual artists and curators involved in censorship disputes. Its main goal is to protect artists’ rights to participate in the democratic dialogue by defending public access to their work and supporting their ability to freely express views that might be unpopular or controversial.
Twitter: @ncacensorship | Facebook: facebook.com/ncacorg | Instagram: @ncacensorship
The Artists at Risk Connection expands on PEN America’s work by defending artists and safeguarding the right to artistic freedom of expression. Launched in 2017, ARC works at the intersection of art and society to address the needs of artists at risk and facilitate collaboration between the organizations that serve them, creating networks of advocacy and empowerment. ARC aims to safeguard the right to artistic freedom of expression around the world and works to ensure that artists of all disciplines everywhere can live and work without fear.
Freemuse is an independent international organization advocating for and defending freedom of artistic expression. We believe that at the heart of violations of artistic freedom is the effort to silence opposing or less preferred views and values by those in power – politically, religiously, or societally – mostly due to fear of their transformative effect. With this assumption, we can address root causes rather than just symptoms – if we hold violators accountable. Instagram: Twitter: Facebook: @Freemuse98
MEDIA NOTE: Artwork and supporting materials are available in our Day of Action Press Kit at https://bit.ly/DDAPressKit.