After the Amazon debacle I began to wonder what websites I could really trust. Are there hidden homophobes altering or deleting content without me knowing? This week, Facebook is up to bat after deeming a rather tame advertisement for a new lesbian film “inappropriate.” What’s a web-obsessed lesbian to do?
You may have already heard about/been looking forward to And Then Came Lola. The film, starring Jill Bennett, Ashleigh Sumner and Cathy Dubuono, is described as a “sexy, lesbian romp, loosely inspired by the art house classic Run, Lola, Run” and is slated to premiere at the Castro Theater in San Francisco on June 19. Generally, when filmmakers have a new movie coming out, they try to advertise, which is what Lola co-producer Ellen Seidler tried to do — when Facebook shot her down.
The ad features three women in what Seidler described to SheWired.com as a “sandwich shot.” It’s hot, but not porno! Check it out:
While the ad is not necessarily G-Rated, it certainly was not “overly explicit” — especially since it would only be seen by lesbians over 18 years of age — but is Facebook saying “no” to lesbians or “no” to implied threesomes?
And why are ads featuring half-naked Playboy bunny-types or photos of freshly waxed bikini lines just peachy, but Seidler’s hot lesbians in tank tops are not?
“The image of this ad is either irrelevant or inappropriate,” Facebook told Seidler, “Per sections 3 and 8 of Facebook’s Advertising Guidelines, the image on your ad should be relevant and appropriate to the item being advertised. Make sure your image is directly relevant to what you are advertising. Images that are overly explicit, provocative, or that reveal too much skin are not allowed. Images that may either degrade or idealize any health condition or body type are also not allowed. If you choose to submit this ad again, please use an appropriate image that adheres to all of Facebook’s Advertising Guidelines.”
I suppose it’s hard to say whether Facebook looks down upon photos suggesting threesomes or just three gay ladies, but the Lola team thinks it’s discrimination. They decided to make their own Facebook page called “And Then Facebook Shunned Lola,” pointing out ads that aren’t “inappropriate” by Facebook standards — like pictures of straight people making out.
“When boys and girls kiss (each other) it’s ok, but when lesbians look at each other (wearing tank tops) it’s not ok,” the filmmaker says on the Facebook page.
Jezebel.com writer hortense agrees that something is fishy,, especially since the site prides itself on an ad program that targets certain groups of people:
“Not only does this reek of homophobia,” she writes. “It also displays a pretty pathetic sense of what a “targeted ad” is on Facebook’s part. By “protecting” Siedler’s intended audience, Facebook has simply placed themselves in a position that makes them look as if they find the lifestyle of said audience too scandalous to promote.”
When the media made a stink about Amazon de-gaying their book selection, the company quickly fixed the “glitch.” We wonder if Facebook will do the same, or whether they will give a less scripted answer as to why, specifically, the ad was denied in the first place.
Do you think Facebook is gay hatin’ or would rather see sexy glances exchanged by just two people?
For more on And Then Came Lola, tank tops and all, check out the film’s website.