The Facebook embargo on nipples, buttocks, and genitals seems to have backfired somewhat, I’m pleased to say. Everybody I seem to know is frantically posting pictures that will inflame the Thought Police. I myself have just posted some images of Michelangelo’s David, front and back, so there’s a full house there. It will be interesting to see what happens. I also posted Reubens’s Judgement of Paris, and a rather lairy picture of Lady Godiva.
One thing puzzles me. How does Facebook intend to police this ridiculous rule? I have a horrible vision of rooms full of spotty, malodorous geeks leering at monitors and dribbling all over their keyboards, while making Beavis and Butthead noises. The thing is that if these images corrupt, the last people you want censoring them are those who’ve been most exposed to them. This is a pretty interesting obstacle with any form of censorship, because at some point the censor has to say, ‘Well, it doesn’t corrupt me, but it will corrupt you because you’re weak in the head, and I’m better than you are.’ Mary Whitehouse was really good at this, as was that silly old sod Lord Longford. This was also the stumbling block in the Lady Chatterley case back in 1960, largely because the prosecutor, Mervyn Rees-Griffiths, asked if it was the kind of book ’you would wish your wife or servants to read.’ He’d read it so why not everybody else? Things were even worse in Oz, where not only was the book itself banned, but also a book about the court case. Work that out if you can.
Alternatively they may be using pattern recognition software of some description, I suppose. That’s not a pretty thought either. The developers would also need to be geeks staring lasciviously at body parts. There’s so much variation in people’s bits that they’d need to scan hundreds of images to show the software what is a bit and what is a strange shaped vegetable, a badly made kebab, or a cupcake with a cherry on the top. This also beggars belief.
Facebook in itself beggars belief. They hear about online bullying and shrug, throw up their hands, and say, ‘Nothing to do with us. We can’t police everything.’ Look how long it’s taken them (and Twitter) to do anything at all about accounts held by those murderous bastards in ISIL. But a few tits and bums and there’s moral, if false, outrage.
Now if you’ll excuse me I need to go and find another Reubens or two to shove onto my Timeline.