Facebook have apologised after deleting content posted to the PinkNews page, because it contained the word “faggot” in the headline.

The story in question was about rapper Azealia Banks, who called blogger Perez Hilton a “messy faggot” and said that he should “kill himself”. Two previous versions of the story had previously been posted without deletion.

The content was published in the early hours of 8 January, and was posted to the PinkNews Facebook page shortly after, but was deleted, apparently because it was reported to Facebook as inappropriate.

All PinkNews writers who have access to the Facebook page also temporarily lost access to their own logins as a result of the deletion.

It contained a quote from Ms Banks’ Twitter page, which contained the homophobic slur, and was posted in quotation marks with the word in its original form.

Sources at Facebook attributed the deletion to the word “faggot” being used in the headline, said that occasionally the user operations officers made mistakes, and that it was in no way intended as censorship. A spokesperson for Facebook said:

“This item of content was removed in error by a member of the Facebook team having been reported to us. We apologise for any inconvenience caused. Pink News are welcome to reshare the content should they wish to do so.”

According to dictionary.com, the word “faggot” has several definitions.

“1. a bundle of sticks or twigs, esp when bound together and used as fuel

“2. a bundle of iron bars, esp a box formed by four pieces of wrought iron and filled with scrap to be forged into wrought iron

“3. a ball of chopped meat, usually pork liver, bound with herbs and bread and eaten fried

“4. a bundle of anything.

“5. slang chiefly  (US ), (Canadian ) Often shortened to: fag a male homosexual”

Meanwhile, a Uganda, it took over 700 signatures on a change.org petition asking Facebook to remove a page aimed at outing gay Ugandans, for it to be removed. 

Uganda is currently considering legislation aimed at increasing penalties for homosexual acts – which are already illegal in the country.