Facebook blocks ad for new Glenstal Abbey book over nude artwork


Michael Staines
Michael Staines

10.29 9 Oct 2019


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Facebook has blocked an ad for a new book from the monks at Glenstal Abbey in County Limerick because it featured nude artwork.

The work features in the new 'Glenstal Abbey – Through the Seasons' book, which is being published by Columba Books.

The illustrations, entitled ‘The Good Thief,’ were created by the Abbey’s Brother Emmaus. They feature one of the thieves said to have been crucified along with Jesus Christ.

Another one of his illustrations, depicting the Archangel Michael, did not make it into the book.

On Newstalk Breakfast his morning, Columba Books spokesman Gary O’Sullivan said Facebook had deemed the artwork to be against its policies because it doesn’t allow ads to show excessive skin.

He said he was surprised by the decision.

“I suppose it is their platform; they are entitled to do it,” he said.

“But I think censorship seems to be something that is increasing on social media.

“Of course we need to protect people from hate speech but this is a piece of art. We are talking about the incarnation here and this is what the artist is trying to depict.”

Listen Back: Gary O’Sullivan from Columba Books, the publishers of the book in question, Glenstal Abbey Through the Seasons, joins Newstalk Breakfast to speak about the ban.

Facebook blocks ad for new Glenstal Abbey book over nude artwork

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