Content Moderation Notes

Introduction

This post provides some more information about the process and guidelines Sketchfab uses with regards to moderating 3D models on the platform.

If you were directed here because one of your 3D models was removed or labelled as Restricted, please take a moment to read the full post before creating a new reply.

:warning: If you see anything (e.g. 3D models, comments, tags, collections) that makes you feel uncomfortable for any reason on sketchfab.com do not hesitate to file a report via this form.


Why does Sketchfab moderate content?

Sketchfab’s goal with content moderation - removing, restricting, promoting, Staff Picking etc. - is intended to create and maintain a welcoming and inclusive environment for anyone creating, viewing or downloading 3D content. We are also working on being especially considerate of how the platform is experienced by underrepresented groups working in 3D, related fields and industries.

Sketchfab is a platform used by a huge variety of individuals and organisations including teachers, schools, brands, businesses, design agencies, scientific researchers, museums and more: we want everyone to feel comfortable with their association our platform.

The Sketchfab Community Team try hard not to take action based on individual and personal preferences and prejudices, in fact the entire Sketchfab team regularly help guide moderation practice for our platform. While it can feel uncomfortable when you’re on the receiving end of moderation, please don’t take it as a moral judgment on yourself or your work - some things are simply not a good fit for Sketchfab and where we see ourselves going in the future.

Why has some content been moderated and some has not?

We rely heavily on user reports for content moderation, if we are not aware of a particular model we are unable to moderate it. With an ever growing community this task is getting bigger every day. We do our best to be consistent and while we may not get things right 100% of the time, be aware that we think hard each and every time before moderating content.

Even if a model has been on the site for a long time, it will be moderated if it does not meet current acceptability standards at the time it is reviewed.

Again, please use this form if you wish to report content that requires moderation.

Why was I given no warning before my model was removed?

For content that is deemed unacceptable (i.e. against the Sketchfab Terms of Use) Sketchfab will always remove it immediately without warning.

You are always welcome to re-upload a modified version of a model that meets the criteria laid out in the User Restrictions and Obligations of the Terms of Use.

We have a zero tolerance policy regarding the depiction of minors in a sexualised context. Posting anything of this sort will result in your account being terminated.

Specifically, what kind of content is regarded as unacceptable?

The Sketchfab content policy is not a fixed list and we work hard to regularly review and update our internal guidelines for content moderation. All models are considered for moderation individually.

It is impossible to create an exhaustive and specific list of content that is or would be deemed unacceptable because uploads are moderated based upon many factors. This includes but is not limited to:

  • model content
  • character pose
  • the environment and props in a scene and their positioning
  • text of titles, tags and descriptions
  • audio
  • animation
  • the off-site fictional or real context of the character or object

As per the Sketchfab Terms of Use, if your model could be considered “pornographic, dehumanizing, threatening, harassing, libelous, hate-oriented, harmful, defamatory, racist, xenophobic, or illegal;” then you should think twice about uploading it.

Because one of the most frequently moderated content categories is erotica we’ll take a moment to share a couple of definitions that we use:

Pornography

The depiction of erotic behavior (as in pictures or writing) intended to cause sexual excitement
Source: Merriam-Webster Dictionary

Note that a model does not have to depict a sexual act to be deemed pornographic

Dehumanizing

To deprive (someone or something) of human qualities, personality, or dignity […] To address or portray (someone) in a way that obscures or demeans that person’s humanity or individuality
Source: Merriam-Webster Dictionary

This includes presenting a person, character or group in an exclusively or primarily sexualised context.

3 Likes