Sour puss: Facebook bizarrely banned users who shared cat photo

The image mysteriously led to users being deactivated. © Dado Ruvic
A seemingly innocuous image of a cat has been causing havoc on social media, mysteriously getting accounts deactivated when shared on Facebook. The cursed cat has led to theories as to why Facebook fears it so much.

Varin Krish wrote on Fonearena that his account was disabled after sharing the image, adamant there was nothing else that could have triggered the deactivation. Other users including a reporter from Techzei corroborated Krish’s experience when they too were blocked after sharing the mostly adorable image.

The dangerous image in question shows a happy looking cat decked out in a very smart suit jacket complete with shirt and tie. By internet standards is doesn’t register as offensive in the slightest.

Facebook hasn’t revealed why the image triggered deactivations but has since fixed the bug, reinstating the accounts of all affected. Theories surrounding the deactivation online include that offensive language is subtly watermarked in the image or that code in the image’s metadata is causing it to be interpreted as offensive.

Given the company’s bizarre attitude to what is and isn’t appropriate material it may not be too far a stretch that CEO Mark Zuckerberg simply took a disliking to the cat.

Last month an iconic image of the Vietnam war was censored by the social network. The Pulitzer Prize-winning image of 'Napalm Girl' was described as being in violation of the site’s community standards as it depicts nudity, according to Facebook. The decision was reversed after the social network said it "listened to the community" and recognized the "global importance" of the photo.

READ MORE: Facebook U-turn: Social network backtracks on ‘Napalm girl’ photo censorship