We have all been scrolling on social media, and come across photos that are too good to be true, you know what I mean. Photos that consist of influencers with flatter stomachs, bigger lips, smoother skins, even enhanced bosoms or derriere’s. Well, Norway is sick of this, and has passed a law that makes it compulsory for influencers to declare which photos of their bodies have been retouched.
Introduced by the Ministry of Children and Family Affairs, the law requires any post that contains a body with modified size, shape, or skin to carry a declaration of alteration. This means that any suspiciously narrow waistlines or unusually perfect complexions that have been achieved using either physical methods prior to the taking of the photo or digital tools afterwards must be acknowledged with a label designed and provided by the Ministry. Those who do not comply may face significant fines or, in extreme cases, possible imprisonment.
Imagine going to jail because your digitally enhanced your body? Well, Norway is clearly not playing any games. The passing of this law comes amid increasing tension surrounding the negative effects of unrealistic beauty standards, especially on teenagers and children – the latter of which are currently joining social media platforms at younger ages than ever before.
The constant bombardment of idealised looks and physiques is creating what Norway refers to as “body pressure” for users. But the issue doesn’t just concern online spaces, it is also “present in the workplace, in the public space, in the home, and in various media,” writes the Ministry. “Body pressure is always there, often imperceptibly, and is difficult to combat.”
Effectively policing the great vastness of social media has never been a simple job, this progressive move by Norway certainly marks a step in the right direction.