Without warning, the Instagram account of the Warwick Rowers disappeared from the social media platform.
The rowing club of athletic lads from Warwickshire in the UK has produced a cheeky calendar since 2009 to benefit the Rowers’ outreach program, Sport Allies, which works to eliminate homophobia in sports through education and support of young LGBT athletes.
Each year the nearly-naked calendars are one of the most popular charity-driven projects among LGBTQ fans. The professionally shot photos playful yet artfu and not of a lacivious nature.
The team tweeted yesterday that the Instagram account had been ‘deactivated’ without warning. “We’re hoping this is a mistake and are waiting for them to allow us back on the platform to keep spreading our message,” wrote the rowers.
As you may have noticed, our @instagram account has been permanently deactivated without any reason communicated to us. We’re hoping this is a mistake and are waiting for them to allow us back on the platform to keep spreading our message @outmagazine https://t.co/9cAcyd5miT
— Warwick Rowers (@warwick_rowers) June 18, 2018
Before the account was deleted the athletes had amassed over 180,000 followers on the social media platform.
The Warwick Rowers say they have appealed the suspension multiple times to Instagram.
The rowers and Instagram have a long history of disagreeing on the content guidelines for the photo-sharing platform.
Instagram’s content guidelines state that they will remove images of “sexual intercourse, genitals, and close-ups of fully-nude buttocks.”
The vast majority of the Warwick Rowers content conforms to those guidelines.
Here's a promotional video for their 2016 calendar.
UPDATE: Hours after the Warwick Rowers received tons of attention for the deletion on Instagram, their account has returned.
No reason was given, but the Rowers posted this photo with the caption "Back on IG got us like: woop woop #bunsout."