Soho, London - The DangerousMinds website announced today that it erroneously ran a story claiming that Facebook had cancelled a gay rights protest after two men were ejected from a bar for kissing. It turns out the creator of the event had simply switched the public event to a private affair after being infiltrated by anti-gay activists.
Kiss-In Examiner.com story
Many gay rights activists and concerned citizens find it interesting that it took as long as it did for the "mistake" to be cleared up by the event creator Paul Shetler via a post on the DangerousMinds website. Sufficient buzz had been built for Shetler by that point.
A statement was released today by DangerousMinds explaining the "mixup" and giving more detail into the story behind the vanishing Facebook event.
It turns out that the Facebook event for the John Snow Kiss-In was not blocked by Facebook, but made private by the creator of the event itself. Paul Shetler, the organizer, left this comment on the previous thread:
“Hey I just saw this. Before it goes too far, I just want people to know that FB have NOT removed the kiss-in event page; it’s still there, but _I made the event private after the event_ was over and only visible to those who had been invited as there were starting to be trolls posting abusive nonsense on it.”
3 ... 2 ... 1 ... Shenanigans.
Many are complaining that the timing of all the events falls too neatly together, and that what happened here is being perceived as a well oiled publicity stunt to garner attention to the situation and the protest itself. Even if this is not the case it is still a bold example of what can happen when sources are not checked, and facts are not verified before making claims against companies and enterprises.
Facebook has issued an apology after a photo of two men kissing was removed from the site.Facebook has issued an apology after a photo of two men kissing was removed from the site.
The photo, a production still from the UK show East Enders, was used to promote a kiss-in at a London pub, after two men were allegedly removed from the establishment last week for being affectionate with each other.
After the photo’s removal, an online campaign soon spread on Facebook with people uploading images of two men kissing as their profile images.
In a statement released by Facebook, the company said: “The photo in question does not violate our Statement of Rights and Responsibilities and was removed in error. We apologize for the inconvenience.”
Meanwhile, the kiss-in on Friday, April 15, attracted hundreds of protestors outside the John Snow in Soho.
Demonstrators were protesting against the pub’s decision to remove two men from the premises for being affectionate with each other.
The kiss-in was originally intended to be inside the pub however the owners closed the doors after learning of the protest on Facebook.
Jonathon Williams and James Bull, the couple who alleged they were ejected from the pub on Wednesday, were among the crowd. On what was meant to be their first date, the couple said they were kicked out by a woman claiming to be the landlord, who called their behaviour ‘obscene’.
Williams and Bull said the turnout was “magnificent” and unexpected.
"I hope people will at least consider that everyone has feelings and you have a right to do, within reason, whatever you want in public, if it's affectionate and loving,” Williams told the BBC.
"I think the fact there are a significant number of straight people that are up in arms about it goes to show people don't find gay people offensive,” said Bull.
The owners of the John Snow are yet to comment on either incident.