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Saturday 10 December 2016

Molly Malone is too sexy for Facebook as internet giant bans image of iconic statue on Dublin author's novel

Alan O'Keeffe

Published 15/07/2015 | 10:20

Frank Whelan with the cover of his book 'Diary of the Wolf'.
Frank Whelan with the cover of his book 'Diary of the Wolf'.
The statute of Molly Malone in the city centre

Molly Malone is 'too sexy' for Facebook.

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The statue with the ample bosom which has graced Dublin's city centre for 28 years appears to be too hot to handle for the social media giant.

First-time author Dubliner Frank Whelan (31) wished to advertise his novel, Diary of the Wolf, on Facebook and submitted an image of the book's cover which shows two wolves, a full moon, and a picture of the Molly Malone statue.

After initial confusion in which Facebook thought the advert was for a dating site, the Dublin writer explained the advertisement was for a novel.

But the image of Dublin's fabled fishmonger was just too steamy for Facebook.

A member of Facebook Ads Team wrote to the author, stating: "Your ad was rejected because the image doesn't follow our ad policies. Ads may not use overly sexual images, suggest nudity, show a lot of skin or cleavage, or focus unnecessarily on specific body parts."

The author then pointed out that the statue stands in the middle of one of Dublin's busiest shopping areas. Despite this, Facebook's final response to him was "our say on this matter remains unchanged."

They have since updated their response to the matter and now say: “Our rules around nudity are in place to reflect the wide range of people on Facebook.

"We always aim to strike a balance between artistic expression and making sure our global community feels comfortable. In reviewing this we made a mistake and quickly restored the advert once it was brought to our attention.

"We apologise for any inconvenience we caused”. 

The author said he was at first 'amused' by the situation.

"At first I was amused but I ended up feeling frustrated. I wanted to promote my novel on Facebook but I definitely won't be changing the cover," the author told the Herald.

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A spokesperson for Facebook said they are the "investigating the matter".

"This is nonsense. Tens of thousands of parents are photographed with their children at the statue every year. Molly Malone is a well known image of our city," said Dublin city councillor Dermot Lacey.

PLASTERED

Alex Connolly, spokesman for Failte Ireland, said he would not be surprised if thousands of images of Molly Malone are not already "plastered all over Facebook by visitors to Dublin."

"Molly Malone is one of the most photographed statues in Dublin and in all of Europe.

"Rigidly applying such rules would also exclude images of many statues of ancient Greece and Renaissance Europe," he said.

You can find "Diary of the Wolf" by Frank E. Whelan here: http://amzn.to/1IZHVty

Herald

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