Stocksy's editors review each series assuming the artist created it with the best intentions. However, our Content Policy challenges us to consider how people, ideas, and cultures are represented in the collection. Occasionally this means we will decline content that was created with good intentions but may be viewed as offensive or problematic.
Cultural appropriation is "the inappropriate or unacknowledged adoption of an element or elements of one culture or identity by members of another culture or identity."
Below are some examples of topics we may not accept.
Culture as a Costume or Prop
We avoid content where we feel culture is used as a costume or prop or otherwise taken out of cultural context: for example, Native American headdresses worn as fashion accessories or Día de Muertos artifacts used as Halloween decor or costumes.
Crossing cultural lines may be acceptable for our collection when celebrated respectfully. We may send back content to ask more questions.
Smudge, Smoke, and Sage
Smoke ceremonies or rituals exist all around the world and have for centuries. Specific smoke ceremonies have their own names, elements, meanings, and purposes. With our largest client and contributor base located in North America, our policy focuses on the Americas' Indigenous cultures, especially the US and Canadian west.
Stocksy supports honoring and respecting the Indigenous cultures of the Americas. We also support the protection of native plant species so that future generations retain access to plants considered sacred and medicinal in their cultures.
Here are some articles that explain the issues:
|Might Be Acceptable
|White sage outside of actual Native American ceremonial use
|Other herb wands or burning herbs
|Blowing on burning sage
|Using a feather to waft smoke
|Lighting with a butane lighter
|Lighting with matches
|Smoke rituals alongside alcohol, smoking, or drugs
|Using the keywords "smudge" or "smudging" outside of actual Native American ceremonial use
|Terms referencing general smoke use (smoke cleansing, smoke ritual, smoke, sacred smoke)
We will add to this post as our policies develop.