Facebook Censors Busty 30,000-Year-Old Artwork For Being Too ‘Pornographic’

By Prosyscom
In March 1, 2018
122 Views



Composite image by DesignTAXI. Background image via Ziko van Dijk / Wikimedia Commons (CC-BY-SA 2.0)

Art is subjective, and it’s clear to see that even Facebook’s moderators—human or AI—have an opinion about it.

Previously, the social network went to court for censoring a 19th century nude painting. You might have thought that its regulations would have slackened by now—but the naked truth is they haven’t.

Per The Art Newspaper, Facebook took down an image of the Venus of Willendorf, a Stone Age statue exhibited at the Naturhistorisches Museum (NHM) in Vienna.

The post, uploaded in December 2017 by self-proclaimed “artivist” Laura Ghianda, was shared over 7,000 times before Facebook marked it as “pornographic.”

In spite of the user appealing the decision four times, the platform deemed the image “inappropriate” and subsequently deleted it.

The Venus of Willendorf dates back 30,000 years ago and portrays a curvy woman with exposed labia. It was discovered in Austria in 1908, and its realism has since been lauded by those who’ve seen it.

Christian Koeberl, NHM’s director general, was taken aback by the censorship. “There has never been a complaint by visitors concerning the nakedness of the figurine,” he responded.

“There is no reason to cover the Venus of Willendorf and hide her nudity, neither in the museum nor on social media.”


Image via Ziko van Dijk / Wikimedia Commons (CC-BY-SA 2.0)


Image via Ziko van Dijk / Wikimedia Commons (CC-BY-SA 2.0)

[via The Art Newspaper, images via Ziko van Dijk / Wikimedia Commons (CC-BY-SA 2.0)]

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