Email A close friend of "American Idol" semifinalist Antonella Barba says the aspiring singer is not the subject of some graphically sexual pictures purported to be of her that were posted on the Internet last week.
The pictures include one of four women posing topless at the beach, their hands covering their breasts, and others of a woman engaged in a sexual act. The postings were anonymous. Barba's best friend, Amanda Coluccio of Holmdel, with whom she auditioned and won a trip to Hollywood for the second round before being eliminated, told The Star-Ledger of Newark that the less graphic photos are of Barba, but denied she is pictured in the pornographic ones.
She's never had acrylic nail tips like the woman in the photo in her life. She's the least slutty person I know. Meanwhile, here in the year-old's hometown, where signs abound wishing her good luck, friends and strangers alike are supporting Barba, saving their condemnation for whomever posted the pictures online.
The fallout has many young people here thinking twice about posing for photos they thought were just to be shared among friends. Everybody knows everything about their friends," said Mark Dillon, I've personally seen at least It's only because she's on TV that they're online.
Throughout Point Pleasant, a Jersey shore town of 18, about 60 miles north of Atlantic City, signs supporting Barba are many. They went up before the photos surfaced, and remain there, a symbol of her hometown's disdain for the commotion surrounding her. Jacqui Reid, a florist whose daughter took violin lessons from Barba, said making the photos public was a gross invasion of privacy, but one that has become a fact of life in the digital age.
Close-ups of the right ear of the woman in the sex photo, and a photo known to be of Barba, show differently shaped ears. Her parents, Vincenzo and Valerie Barba, did not immediately respond to messages left on their answering machine and a letter left at their front door. A Fox publicist said the network would have no comment on the situation and would not make any of the contestants available for interviews.
The photos capped a stressful week for Barba, who until recently had been studying architecture at Catholic University in Washington. Yet she made it through to the second round, and is due to perform Wednesday night with the nine other remaining female contestants. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.