The Mardi Gras tradition is too much for the social media site, apparently.
King cakes — and the tiny plastic baby they often contain — are used to controversy. Back in the olden days, the Mardi Gras staple typically came with the baby baked right inside — that is, until concern over this trinket being a choking hazard led to the baby being served on the side, leaving the buyer to push it inside at their own risk. Fair enough: No one wants to die eating cake. But now, those little plastic babies are causing controversy again for a completely different reason… They’re too naked!
For years, King Cake Snob — billed as “a website where you can rate and review local king cakes” — has used visitor feedback to choose the best king cakes in various categories in the lead up to Mardi Gras. So with the holiday rapidly approaching, the site decided to build some interest with a sponsored Facebook post. “We're back baby!” the brand wrote last week on an image featuring ten tiny plastic king cake babies — all of which were, as usual, in the buff.
However, though the image remains up, Facebook decided to flag it as ineligible for a paid “sponsored” post. On their website, King Cake Snob said they received a message from the social media giant stating, “This ad isn’t running because it includes an image or video depicting excessive skin or nudity, which includes medical diagrams depicting external organs of reproduction, breasts or butt. This kind of material is sensitive in nature.” Facebook apparently suggested that King Cake Snob repost the image but without any nudity. Maybe give the babies some tiny plastic diapers?
“We are shocked that Facebook would censor the king cake baby, one of the quintessential traditions of the Mardi Gras culture,” Jay Connaughton — managing partner of Innovative Advertising, the ad agency behind King Cake Snob — said in a statement. “The king cake babies depicted in the King Cake Snob image are naked, but not graphic in nature. On the contrary, the babies are a representation of the tradition, decadence and obsession our culture has for king cakes and Mardi Gras.”
In the end though, this baby controversy has likely been better for King Cake Snob than any sponsored Facebook post. As an ad agency, they clearly saw the potential to use this news to their advantage and have since turned to humorous “Banned by Facebook” posts with a black “censored” bar over the tiny baby bottoms. “Our ranks continue to swell w/ King Cake supporters appalled at the injustice of denying the innocent King Cake babies from Facebook ads,” the site posted yesterday on Twitter. Let’s just say that naked babies usually aren’t this good for business.