The social media site twice took down a picture of Lasse Gustavson after his friend Bjorn Lindeblad posted the photograph on Sunday to celebrate his 60th birthday.
The company only restored the image when more than 10,000 people shared a third post by Mr Lindeblad, criticising their “disgusting policy”.
The post now has more than 30,000 shares.
“It’s an offensive system Facebook has with this kind of censorship. You could call it a kind of racism,” said Mr Gustavson, who has no ears, hair or eyebrows, in an interview with Sweden’s Aftonbladet newspaper.
Mr Gustavson was injured in an explosion at an oil depot in Gothenburg in 1981, when he was a 24-year-old firefighter. He spent two months in a coma in hospital and woke up permanently disfigured.
Since then, he has become a successful motivational speaker in Sweden.
He said that although the removal of his photograph did not negatively impact his birthday, if the site had done the same to someone else it could be extremely damaging.
“When I was 24, I probably would have felt offended and upset that pictures of me were considered wrong and unpleasant,” he said.
“It is a very volatile and sensitive time... but now I have lived so long with my burns.”
Mr Lindeblad, a meditation teacher, said he did not understand why his post was removed on Sunday. He only came to suspect it had been deliberately censored when he heard the same thing had hapened to other burn victims.
He added in a Facebook post: "At first, I was flabbergasted. Then several burn victims contacted me and explained that photos of burn victims are often classified in the same category as sexist and racist photos on Facebook. Oh dear."
Mr Gustavson said he also knew of other people with scars who had their photographs taken down.
When Mr Lindeblad posted the birthday message a third time, he encouraged others to share it.
“Do you want to help me to speak out against a disgusting Facebook policy? Share or spread this photo of one of the most beautiful souls I know,” he wrote.
After his post went viral, he received a message of apology from Facebook on Tuesday informing him that his original photographs had been reinstated.
“A member of our team accidentally removed something you posted on Facebook. This was a mistake, and we sincerely apologise for this error. We’ve reinstated the content, and you should now be able to see it.”
Instagram censorship controversies
Instagram censorship controversies
Rupi Kaur uploaded an image onto the social networking site for a menstruation-themed photo series developed by her and her sister Prabh. The image, which was taken by Prabh, shows Ms Kaur lying down on a bed fully clothed with two spots of blood visible on her clothes and on the sheet. It was removed from Instagram twice for violating its community standards. Ms Kaur challenged the removal and the image was eventually restored on the site
Harley Weir’s Instagram account was deactivated, after she shared images from a shoot for i-D magazine. Weir was photographing nude models for the magazine's The Female Gaze edition from her series, Portraits of a Woman. Weir, who also shot the controversial Calvin Klein erotica themed campaign, shared a shot of one model, who was on her period, with her 91,000 followers. Menstrual blood was visible on the model’s legs and the image was removed
Chrissy Teigen uploaded an image of herself taken for the W Magazine, in which Teigen’s nipple was visible. The picture was later determined to violate Instagram’s usage guidelines and the image was removed. To challenge the policy Teigen later posted a selfie on Instagram with a strategically placed can of hairspray covering her nipple
Scout Willis was banned from Instagram for posting a photograph of a sweatshirt she designed featuring two topless women. The 22-year-old actress, who is the daughter of Bruce Willis and Demi Moore, went on a topless jaunt around New York City to highlight her disagreement with policies against female nudity
Rihanna is known for notoriously challenging Instagram's censorship. In the latest spat with the site her topless photo from the cover of French magazine Lui was banned
Instagram was heavily criticised for deleting photos of women showing off their post-baby bodies. That prompted women who wanted to show how the motherhood really looks like, to form the group The 4th Trimester Bodies Project and post images of their changed bodies
Blogger Meghan Tonjes posted an image of her butt to Instagram as a body-positive message to her followers. The picture was quickly removed as it was considered as inappropriate and violating site's guidlines. Tonjes however believed that it was taken down due to her size
User Samm Newman posted a selfie in her underwear to celebrate her plus-size figure but Instagram decided to take the image down. The social platform was later questioned about the controversial censorship, as many believed it was an example of fat-shaming
Comedian Chelsea Handler challenged the nudity policy with an image in which she tried to recreate a shirtless photo of Russian president Vladimir Putin. The post was removed by Instagram and Handler called the move sexist, saying, “If a man posts a photo of his nipples, it's OK, but not a woman? Are we in 1825?”
Many women have had their Instagram photos removed and accounts shut down because of breastfeeding photos. In a protest against censoring photos of mothers taking part in something as natural as breastfeeding groups such as @normalizebreastfeeding dedicated their accounts to fight the stigma
Australian online magazine Sticks and Stones had its Instagram account removed after posting the photo of two women with pubic hair peeking out of their swimsuits
A Facebook spokesperson also told journalists the post had been removed in error.
Mr Lindeblad's original message to Mr Gustavson said:
"Today is your 60th birthday, my friend. You´re enjoying yourselves royally in Southern Sweden, while I´m working hard on the West coast. And that's completely OK. Because thanks to people like you, I can now do my work joyfully. You brought me light, when almost everything inside felt dark. You opened doors, that I assumed would remain closed forever. You call me, eerily often, just when I need to hear your voice and your wisdom. You tease the excessive seriousness out of me, when that's whats needed. You're living proof that wisdom and playfulness walk hand in hand. And you remind me, again and again, of so much of what's beautiful about true manliness."Reuse content