Facebook has no patience for boobies–not even the feathered kind. The social media site reportedly took immediate action after the Christmas Island Tourism Board posted an ad for its annual Bird’n'Nature Week that read: “Some gorgeous shots here of some juvenile boobies.”
Of course, ornithologists and casual weekend bird-watchers alike know that “boobies”—besides being, you know, boobies—are also a type of goofy-looking bird found on islands and along coastlines, including on Christmas Island, a small Australian territory in the Indian Ocean.
Linda Cash, marketing manager of the Christmas Island Tourism Association, insisted to the Travel Daily News that the “juvenile boobies” ad was purely meant “to share the wonderful birdlife on our island.”
“We presumed our original advert was blocked automatically so we appealed to Facebook directly who re-affirmed the campaign was banned due to the sexual language – particularly the use of the word ‘boobies’,” she said.
Yes, boobies are real birds found on Christmas Island. And yes, some people, I suppose, do find them “gorgeous.” It’s also factual that at some point in every booby’s life, it is “juvenile.” But check out this Facebook album updated eight months ago, and you’ll see that the Christmas Island Tourism Association has used the “juvenile boobies” gag before—and hardly without any sexual implications, if you ask me.
Still, this cheery travel agent dude from the UK, also interviewed in the Travel Daily News piece, has this to say:
“Christmas Island tourism is in its infancy, but there are few places in the world where you can find such a magical concentration of rare species of sea and land animals. Bird Conservation Week is one of the best times to visit the island and the economy there is becoming increasingly reliant on holiday makers from the UK and the rest of Europe. By blocking the tourist boards campaign, one of the world’s great eco-tourism destinations is being deprived of its lifeline because someone at Facebook cannot comprehend that a Booby is a bird. Dare I say it, but with so many Boobies to see, it is like all your Christmases come at once.”
So there you go.