An amateur tennis club’s charity calendar broke Facebook’s strict rules after the social media site said the photographs were ‘sexually suggestive’.
Members of the Belper Tennis Club in Derbyshire stripped off and posed with yellow and green balls protecting their modesty for the tongue-in-cheek photoshoot.
One female player was pictured laying in a bathtub full of tennis balls while another member held up a giant ball after taking his clothes off.
They made the ‘Anyone for Tennis?’ 2018 calendar to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society but were told the black-and-white images were not acceptable for the site.
November: One of the female tennis players took off her clothes and was photographed lying in a bathtub full of yellow and green balls
October: A naked man held up a giant tennis ball and posed for the cheeky calendar which is called ‘Anyone for Tennis?’
January: One woman tried to recreate the famous ‘Tennis Girl’ British poster which was taken in 1976
February: Two naked men were standing on a court behind tennis ball baskets to hide their modesty
Facebook got in touch with the group because the photographs breached their strict rules on nudity.
Photographer Ashley Franklin, 62, took the snaps and has blasted Facebook, saying the ruling ‘beggars belief’.
He said: ‘I was approached to take some pictures of a tennis club for a charity calendar and jumped at it.
‘We did a great shoot, cheeky shots of the members covering their modesty with yellow tennis balls.
‘To get some interest going and promote it, I posted some pictures on Facebook but soon received a snotty message from Facebook saying it broke their rules on nudity.
‘It beggars belief. Especially when you see what other images are permitted on Facebook including ones promoting terrorism.
‘I can understand their guidelines but these images aren’t sexually suggestive. They’re mostly middle-aged people who want to raise money for a worthy cause.’
In messages sent from Facebook, the company claimed the images ‘imply nudity’ and were ‘sexually suggestive’.
A post sent to Ashley said: ‘It looks like the image being used in your ad is against Facebook’s Ad Guidelines.
March: Two naked women exchanged a few shots from either side of the net at their tennis club in Derbyshire
July: The group wanted to make the ‘Anyone for Tennis?’ 2018 calendar to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society
June: One man pretended to be a line judge as another male tennis player kicked chalk from the line towards him
May: Four female tennis players were pictured laughing and joking around inside the club’s dressing room
‘We don’t allow ads that imply nudity, for example, through blurring or cropping. Try using content that focuses on your product or service rather than on nudity.
‘Ads with content that feature sexually suggestive positioning or that show a lot of skin (even if it’s for an artistic or education reason) aren’t allowed because of their sensitive nature.
‘If you wish to continue advertising, please follow our Ad Guidelines and use content that’s less sexually suggestive.’
The photoshoot was organised by Jo Williams, member of Belper Tennis Club, whose mother was struck down with dementia.
She said: ‘I realised my mother was one of 850,000 people with dementia in the UK and then I read that over 200,000 will develop dementia in the next year – that’s one every three minutes.
‘If that’s not distressing enough, I found that dementia research is desperately underfunded.
‘I thought the best way to raise awareness and funds was to raise a smile.
‘Everyone must have either a relative with Alzheimer’s or know of someone who has a sufferer in their family. If so, I hope they can help.
‘It’s very narrow-minded of Facebook to take it down. You see more on a beachthan these images. All we wanted to do was create some fun and raise money forcharity.’
The £10 calendars are now available to buy online.
December: The group were wearing just shoes and festive hats when they gave each other Christmas presents
The calendar, called ‘Anyone for Tennis’ (pictured), is now available to purchase for £10
August: Two members were standing together on the grass court and were holding different size balls
September: Two women pointed and laughed at a sign on the tennis court which said: ‘Please ensure you wear only tennis shoes on court’
April: Four naked male tennis players posed next to each other to help make the cheeky calendar