Facebook Deems UNF Paper Cover Photo a 'Violation'

 @ibtimes on March 31 2011 7:05 AM

Popular Social Networking Site Facebook has deemed the controversial cover photo of University of North Florida newspaper Spinnaker as violation of Terms of Use.

University of North Florida's student newspaper Spinnaker has run into trouble after printing a picture of simulated oral sex on its front cover to promote an article about how oral sex spreads human papillomavirus (HPV).

In the photograph, a fully clothed man is shown simulating oral sex on a woman sitting atop a stool. Neither's face is shown.

However, Josh Gore, the paper's editor, defended the decision. HPV is a problem everywhere, said Gore. It's happening and that's why we put it on cover. This is not obscene. This is not obscene at all.

It complimented the story, it got people to read the story and this was not pornography, Gore said.

Meanwhile, Spinnaker's web editor Ian Albahae said when they went to print the photo as the Facebook image, the social networking site saw a problem with the image and took it down.

I received an email at about 6:30 this morning saying that my account was under warning for posting obscene imagery, First Coast News reported quoting Albahae.

The email went on to say Facebook does not allow photos that attack an individual or group or that contain nudity, drug use, violence or other violations of the Terms of Use.

Facebook prompted Albahae to re-agree to the terms of use, terms he still doesn't think the image violated, the report added.

Meanwhile, students gave a mixed reaction to the controversial front page picture.

It's too risqué, just shouldn't have it, said one student. I like it. I think it's offensive but I like it. Freedom of the press, the paper's independent, said another student.

The newspaper's faculty adviser, John Timpe, told Channel 4 that the student government pays less than half of the salaries of students who work for the paper. Those funds were frozen after the edition came out for three days.

Timpe said it was because of a problem with an advertisement in the paper and had nothing to do with the controversial cover. But he added there have been problems with ads before and funding has never been frozen.

Members of the UNF Health Promotion staff believe the rise in throat cancer can be attributed to a change in our culture's view of oral sex.

Meanwhile, scientists across the country are finding oral sex causes throat cancer. The reason behind this concern for oral sex is the potential infections behind the human papillomavirus (HPV).

HPV has consistently been a topic of concern because it is the same virus that causes cervical cancer. HPV is a common sexually transmitted disease that infects about 40 million people today. There are over 120 different strands of the virus.

According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, 37,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral cancer this year, and 8,000 will die. These numbers include people who use tobacco as well as those engaging in oral sex. However, people who develop cancer through oral sex are more likely to survive cancer than heavy smokers or drinkers.

When it comes to infections transmitted through oral sex, people mainly need to be concerned with HIV, HPV and gonorrhea, said Dr. John Oliver, a UNF adjunct psychology professor who teaches a class called Human Sexuality.

Oliver said many studies are focusing on sex between males and females, but he said he believes the virus can be contracted through homosexual or bisexual activity, as well.

We have to assume the virus is transmitted either way, Oliver said.

In a monogamous relationship, Oliver said oral sex is healthy and acts as a wonderful variation for couples.

Join the Discussion