back to article Facebook forced to reinstate snogging men pic

Overly prudish censorship by Facebook is in the firing line again today for giving offence to yet another large group of its users before being forced into a hasty retreat. This time, with word spreading rapidly around the US and UK gay communities of homophobic prejudice on the part of Facebook moderators, the social media …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    It has nothing to do with "the gay lobby"

    It has everything to do with people, gay or straight, being fed up with the hypocritical and narrow-minded views of a select few. The fact that the image which was blocked is actually a promo still of a popular British soap pretty much sums it up.

    1. Jimbo 6

      For once, I'm with Farcebook

      Anything that prevents impressionable youngsters being lured into the sordid, perverse world of soap operas can only be good.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward



    I am disgusted by your report that chaps have been seen kissing other chaps in public. Do they think they're European or something?

    Any decently educated person would be aware that the proper place for such activities is in the third-year dorm, after Matron has finished her rounds.

    Even me dam... <cough> ... dashed troll icon isn't working now.

    Colonel Buckfast-Guzzler (retired)

    1. Anomalous Cowturd

      The Mash had it about right last week...

  3. Rob Moir

    is this homophobia

    or merely stupidity on the part of facebook? As you guys point out, the fuss over the breast feeding thing they had a while ago suggests that if facebook staff are bigots, they are at least equal opportunities ones.

    1. Cunningly Linguistic

      Homophobia is...

      ...stupidity in extremis.

    2. Marvin the Martian

      Let's be consistent: what is facebook-like activity?

      One of the claimed standards is that "un-facebook-like activities must be removed". So, given that there's twee religious pages, anything professing atheism or humanism must be deleted; and vice versa. Two birds with one stone!

      As the vast majority is inane twitter-like babbling, anything that makes sense should be removed.

      All the freed up space can be devoted to farmville.

  4. Anonymous Coward

    "kiss-in" at the John Snow pub in Soho

    So trying to organise a bullying campaign? Does that breach Facebook rules?

    1. hitmouse


      In my day bullying was being beaten over the head or vilely taunted, not being subjected to the possible sight of kissing outside my place of work.

      1. Marvin the Martian

        Bullying indeed it is!

        Sticks and stones may break my bones, but men holding hands will truly hurt me. Especially at the pub, my place of work and solace.

    2. Some Beggar

      Oh you poor wee lamb!

      Are those awful big bullies snogging in public when not even your mum will kiss you?

  5. Atonnis


    I'm all for steadily wiping out intolerance (and tolerance does NOT equal acceptance, btw) but the screams, shouts, threats and dramatics brought on by 'lobbies' first before a simple message stating that there was 'nothing wrong with the picture and please can they explain why it was removed' really does piss me off.

    In my life I have received more intolerance, threats and attitude from people who are always looking for there to be some big reason to be offended. I'm confident saying that the actions of a single human being at Facebook's removal of the picture was indeed wrong, but it doesn't need to be a massive over-the-top story. After all, people make mistakes or have certain ingrained dislikes, and yelling and threatening is not going to ever coach them out of that way of thinking - only make them solidify their stance against you.

    Perhaps if people were more willing to say 'I think you may have done this in error, please reconsider' first rather than ZOMFGWTFBURNMF-ER! then this sort of absent-minded bigotry may just fade away...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      History books overflow with examples of minorities overcoming mindless prejudice and hatred by asking politely that the majority refrain from trampling their rights.

      1. Atonnis

        Oh indeed...

        Yes...and because history books, which are so full of the detailing of social interactions and not large-scale wars, violence and politics...what a ridiculous argument. This isn't slavery or refusing the right to vote, work, live or use the same bus/toilet/etc - this is a Facebook situation - which implies the people involved aren't so downtrodden that their entire race/creed/religion/gender/sexualty has to get involved.

        The sort of logic that negates polite requests before all-out abuse and demands will never sit right with me. People are all too ready to jump to be offended, particularly in this country, and to squeal like stuck piggies until they get their way. In what I do, I always ignore those who come in with threats, abuse and ALL CAPS ways of speaking and always deal with the polite first. Maybe it's a luxury I can afford, but personally I think it's just the due of any human being.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      "first before a simple message stating that there was 'nothing wrong with the picture and please can they explain why it was removed"

      Have you ever tried to get hold of Facebook?

  6. Thomas 18

    moderate moderation

    Bigot / Prude user reports picture

    Overworked Facebook staff member glances at it for 1s and ticks ban

    You have to moderate and it's impossible to for every pleb in your ranks to be 100% right 100% of the time. The important bit about this story is that the higher ups recognised the mistake and corrected it instead of spinning up the excuse machine as a certain other corporation has been known (or just refusing to acknowledge the appeal at all).

    It's probably a pretty stressful job anyway staring at gratuitous pictures all day long and hitting the big red ban button. Probably beats working fast food though.

    1. LaeMing

      AI-driven image moderation

      I heard they had developed an AI-based solution, but it kept deleting itself in preference to an existence devoted to reading facebook.

  7. Anonymous Coward


    As much as people shout homophobia on this there are quite a few females that seem to think it is appropriate to have their display pictures on that sight wearing next to no clothing.

    The same goes for the males aswell.

  8. NoneSuch Silver badge

    Homer kissed Ned on TV the other night

    ...but they were at a Yank football game so that was OK.

    I guess it is different when the gals do it...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      Let me get this straight - you seem to be suggesting (correctly) that there is nothing wrong with guys kissing, buy in order to do that you feel it's ok to use the word "Yank", a pejorative term, however you look at it.

      Banning photos of men kissing, not good.

      Saying "Gay" when you mean bad is not a good thing.

      Saying "Yank" when you mean American is not a good thing either.

      1. Greg J Preece

        Hi David!


        Still sensitive about that one, eh?

  9. mraak

    I like

    Japanese girls licking their feet on YouTube :)

  10. Bro. Steve Winter

    Facebook is also censoring Bible men and Christian bands as well

    Facebook is getting very brazen in its political and religious censorship.

    Please spread the word about

    Facebook is even censoring Bible verses from wall comments. Regardless of whether you appeciate the truth that I preach do you really approve of FB actually censoring Bible verses from wall comments?

    I am NOT the only one this is happening to! Many simply don't realize because they don't go back to see if their wall comments are still there a few minutes later.

    You can also see the latest islamic death threat against me and my family.

    Bro Steve Winter

    1. Allan George Dyer Silver badge

      So what is

      Facebook's justification for censoring a fictional work?

    2. Anonymous Coward

      @Bro. Steve Winter

      I completely agree Steve. They shouldn't censor people posting verses from the Bible as wall comments. I for one would love the opportunity to point out how completely ridiculous quotes from the Bible are. I especially like the contradictory versus (an eye for an eye vs turn the other cheek etc.) since they are so easy to argue against. Lots of fun to be had ridiculing literal belief of the creation myth in Genesis.

      Personally, I was brought up worshipping some make believe sky fairy, but fortunately, I saw the light. Funnily enough, a friend of mine likes posting quotes from Dawkin's, "The God Delusion" on facebook and I've never seen those quotes censored.

  11. Anonymous Coward

    Me, personally ...

    I think they are rather personable and attractive chaps and can't see what the fuss could possibly be.

    I kiss my mates all the time, including the hettie ones, and it has never drawn any sort of comment.

    Make love, not war, I say.

  12. itspoyle

    a clear resolution

    Intolerant people should be shot.

  13. h4rm0ny

    So what is their stance on straight kissing?

    I'm not on Facebook, so I don't know, but do pictures ever get taken down for showing straight sexual activity?

    Same with the pub. I've been told off by pub management for snogging someone of the opposite sex in a pub, so what is different about a gay couple getting asked not to? It depends on the pub and the circumstances, but without knowing those, we can't judge.

  14. dave 46

    stop oppressing me with titles!

    I bet facebook has deleted pictures of heterosexual couples kissing from time to time too.

    Anyone who's ever moderated any content knows the guidelines aren't always clear, there isn't time for extended debate or discussion, and if you get it wrong you're a nazi.

    1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      1. Cunningly Linguistic
        Paris Hilton

        Pics please...

        ...of you in the uniform!

      2. Kristian Walsh

        Excellent :)

        "I mean, I actually am a Nazi, but that's not the point."

        Just thinking... that could probably summarise about half the political postings on the 'net.

        P.S. they made you work today? On the Führer's birthday and all? Sounds like repression to me...

  15. idris

    Polite requests are ignored

    "Perhaps if people were more willing to say 'I think you may have done this in error, please reconsider' first rather than ZOMFGWTFBURNMF-ER! "

    Have you ever actually tried politely asking a lumbering mammoth organisation to fix a minor problem? Once the members start out-numbering staff by a factor of 250,000, a lone voice politely saying "errr..." is almost impossible to hear. To be heard you need a crowd (or a lawyer).

    Politeness went out the window the moment facebook threatened to delete the user's account if they dared to upload this harmless photo again. Being told that an innocent aspect of your life is objectionable is a perfectly valid reason to feel aggrieved.

    Making a blog post about the action was reasonable. The public response was proportionate - and crucially, very effective: do you think facebook moderators will make this mistake again?

  16. Jemma

    To misquote Gen Melchett...

    "I dont care if he's been buggering the Duke of York with a prize winning leek - he queered my facebook..."

    Oh, am I getting tired of all this.

    I get off the train with my girlfriend - and its "ooh look, a couple of dykes" - before we even manage to get two feet on the platform..

    I mention I lost my partner to cancer to a female friend - and get the usual 'soppy-pseudosympathy-look' and the 'what sort of cancer did he die of' - and then I mention that he, was a she, and said girl transitions into the traditional "OMG! a lesbian, shes gonna throw me down and ravish me" look faster than The Hamster spunks over a Lexus LMA...

    Not to mention the UK Census - um hate to tell you this people, but most human beings have a sexuality outside of marriage/civil partnership - its possible to be single AND gay/bi/lesbian/K9/horse/donkey etc (*delete as applicable). Oh yeah, and the trans/intersex community have been around since the human race existed.. so you might want to remember that when creating the questions...

    Please will someone with half a brain inform the dickwits and god botherers (of all discriminations - oh sorry i mean denominations) that just because its on a computer screen and was invented by a college nerk who has all the social graces of Baldricks left testicle - that there is such a thing as equality laws.

    Personally I have no problem with practically anything as far as relationships go - I dont care what you do to whom/what as long as its not terminal/seriously harmful and is consenting. But what really makes me sick are these people who hide behind "religion" and "morals" and winge about gays/lesbians and the rest of the wonderful rainbow of human relationships... when its generally been proven scientifically that they're wingeing because they're just like the people they're targeting - but are too much of a spineless godbotherist to actually realize that waking up to someone you love and desire is the point of life - it doesnt matter whether they're the same gender or a different gender - hell, I dont really give a monkeys that one of my close friends 'boyfriends' has four legs and reports to the vet when he needs a check up...

    it is no skin off my pert and pretty nose that she chooses to have a relationship with an entity who's contribution to a conversion is basically 'woof' - and can lick his own nuts clean...

    Actually - compared to a lot of men thats a step up to be fair... and I speak from some experience. I think Mehmet - or "peanut boy" as he became known - was the worst experience..

    Please, homophobes et al, stop throwing your toys out of the pram because you cant get over yourselves and join in with the rest of us in the wonderful tapestry that is the human sexuality...

    After all you never know what you are going to be next time around...

    NEWSFLASH: Westboro Baptist Church member reincarnates as Amoeba ...

    now wouldnt that be apt...

    1. SirTainleyBarking

      NEWSFLASH: Westboro Baptist Church member reincarnates as Amoeba ...

      Honestly, how could you actually tell except by the application of a DNA test?

    2. Francis Boyle Silver badge

      I want to change my user name

      to Baldrick's Left Testicle.

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