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Facebook clarifies what you're allowed to post on its social network

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Facebook's content guidelines have sparked confusion, to put it mildly -- a lot of people are unsure as to whether or not they have to use their legal names, or whether it's safe to post breastfeeding photos. At last, though, the social network is clearing the air a bit. It just posted new Community Standards that don't change the company's stance, but should remove some of the gray areas. For one, it's emphasizing that you only have to use your "authentic identity," not the name your government recognizes -- important if you identify with a non-traditional gender. Facebook also clarifies that you can mention hate speech for the sake of social commentary, and refines its views on harassment, nudity and what happens to your account when you die. A few sections are completely new, such as one explicitly forbidding revenge porn and other forms of sexual exploitation.

The updated standards won't make you happy if you took issue with Facebook's broader policies in the first place. The site won't pull content worldwide solely because it's banned in a given country, for example, but it still won't defy those bans if they're questionable. Even so, this could help allay fears that you'll get kicked out for making a controversial (but well-intentioned) post.

[Image credit: AP Photo/Jeff Chiu]

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