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Changes to moderation policies: no more face pics in profile images

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member
Hi everyone,

The beyondblue forums are an anonymous space where we discourage the sharing of any information that may personally identify you to someone reading.

These forums are public, searchable and indexed by Google, so we ask people to consider their words and think about the level of detail they are sharing with the world before hitting 'post'.

Up until now, we have allowed the use of profile pictures that depict a member's face, but after feedback from the community we have decided to change this policy in order to keep our message about anonymity on the forums consistent.

From today, our moderators will no longer approve the use of profile picture images that clearly depict your face.

If you already have a face picture displayed on your profile, we won't be removing it, but would ask you to have a think about the privacy implications of having your face on display in connection with other personal detail you may be sharing in your posts here.

This thread will also serve as a runnning discussion around how to protect your privacy and anonymity on the forums.

Feedback is welcome.
40 Replies 40

Thanks Romantic_thi3f and Paul,

I do get things a little muddled sometimes and forget where to locate the information people require!

Thanks for helping out.

Cheers from Dools

Skary Bill
Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member
Thanks everyone 🙂 I'm going to have to spend some time getting creative.

Hi Bill, 

Thanks for reaching out to us and we apologise for the misunderstanding. Our moderators review hundreds of pieces of content a day and unfortunately on this occassion we didn't get it right!

Just letting you know that your avatar has been changed back for you! 

Thanks for the community for stepping in to clarify as well!

Skary Bill
Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi Sophie, I just saw the avatar pop up and it made my day.

Thanks so much for reviewing this. FWIW, I think the mods do a fantastic job with this forum. Keeping it spam free and a safe, welcoming space 24hrs a day is no small task.



Community Member

Once an account has been created, the first thing this site does is prompt people to upload a profile photo. Perhaps this should be reviewed.

While there, the site also needs updating so gif and png are accepted as valid image files.

Community Member
Hi, I have no problem with changing my profile picture, that isn't a problem. Nor is it a problem for me to have other people to see my face. I have nothing to hide, and I am not ashamed of having a mental health issue. Just putting this out there. I will change the profile picture though.

Hi Dr Rotten

Thanks for mentioning about the site prompting for people to upload a profile pic. I dont remember as I joined the forums in 2016...and actually did post my own photo as my profile pic at the time. We have had online community managers work very hard to update the forums to a new format and duly noted 🙂

Hi Blondie2020...Thankyou for posting!...I agree with you as I am happy to place my photo as my pic as I have nothing to hide too! Its mainly due to privacy regs and if someone used my (or your) photo as their profile pic it may cause us some serious pain/anguish

my kind thoughts...Paul...(Volunteer)

as a dissociative looking at a profile picture that isn't of me makes me feel even more disconnected from myself. probably just to avoid future problems rather than any help to the MI.

Hi Tzariina,

Can't say I've any clue how you feel (seeing as I've never experienced dissociation) but your post made me think for sure...

I wonder what options are possible seeing as photos aren't possible to use safely. Just wanted to ask if you had any ideas on what might help you and others in your situation?

I chose my picture after much thought. At first I was going to use an oak tree (Quercus is the botanical name for this) and I chose my username because oak trees are significant for me personally. But it didn't feel right. So I searched for an image that felt like me whenever I looked at it. My Fox is 'me' somehow.

Just wanted to ask if something like this process might help you too?

Also... A question for BB moderators on this topic...

If members were to create an abstract artwork, cartoon or similar of themselves could that be an option provides it wasn't able to clearly identify them?



Hope everyone had a lovely weekend and a lot of really great thoughts here.

Coming in from a CC perspective, the profile pic rule wasn't an easy decision to make. We completely understand the anonymity of the forums and respect that completely. With that said, whenever we post on the forum - it says online; while only BB members can reply, everyone everywhere can see it.

Initially, some people decided to upload profile pictures, but then lots of people wanted to take them down for numerous reasons- whether that was DV situations or fear of friends/family finding out. It was always very inconsistent which is why there's been a blanket rule of no personal identifying information for everyone.

Quercus - yes! So long as it's not identifying, the limits are kind of endless- a character that you like, art that resonates, your pet, symbols, quotes... Sometimes they can be excellent conversation starters 🙂