The campaign, which is aimed at 16 to 25 year olds, will attempt to increase awareness of the risks to sexual health caused by Facebook and other social networking sites and promote responsible online encounters.
A spokesman for the Department of Health said, "it is clear that there is a problem here, which isn't in any way due to an increase in casual unprotected sex caused by the Government's gradual erosion of education, morals, parenting and personal responsibility. Honest. No, it's all the fault of Facebook, and it is therefore right that we take action to educate and inform young people of the terrible risk posed by social networking to their sexual health."
The campaign, entitled 'Practice Protected Poking', will focus on the risks of socially-transmitted diseases and will encourage young people to use condoms when 'typing one-handed' on social networking sites. Computer peripheral manufacturers have also pledged their support, with keyboard maker Cherry offering a free latex keyboard protector to prevent the transmission of viruses.
Software giant Microsoft has declined to get involved at this stage, pointing out that they have enough problems controlling the rampant spread of infections they already have. There was also a lack of support from Linux companies such as Red Hat, who pointed out that anyone using Linux was so far removed from normal social and sexual interaction that they were unlikely to risk infection.
However, activists have already attacked the campaign for not going far enough to protect young people from the dangers of socially-transmitted diseases. The chairperson of the Moral Outrage Commission, Linda Papadopolous, said, "this is a moral outrage that such a thing could be happening in today's world, and obviously it must be someone's fault. Equally obviously, it must be the fault of the evil software that is putting children at risk, so therefore we must ban social networking sites. Won't somebody please think of the children?"