Facebook: Innocent Fun or Cauldron of Evil?

Do you spell 'nuked' with a 'q'?
Do you spell 'nuked' with a 'q'?
Yesterday, Ashley Lobo was complaining how all the comments on a photo I’d posted of us were blowing up her email’s in-box. That lead me to wonder why she didn’t turn off email notifications, like the rest of us, and just check her updates from time to time. It also struck me as a tad disingenuous since a part of her job is to make people pay attention to her, and thus to Nude Hippo. So having a lot of people say nice things about you and those you work with would seem like a good thing.

Of course, I could be wrong. It has happened before.

It does seem, though, that more and more people are taking what happens on Facebook seriously enough to warrant further consideration of the social networking behemoth. I mean, after all, it was started by an amoral butt munch who screwed over his colleagues and friends just to make money. With that kind of foundation you have to expect a few minor issues. Especially in the morals’ department.

The folks at Gizmodo are so concerned that they are calling for a world wide boycott of the site. In typical B-movie fashion, Aishwarya Bhatt has an interesting article about an asthmatic stalker who’s giving people fits. Especially the young lady whom he claims is his girlfriend. This seems to be news to her. The article is kind of vague on the more salient points but, it seems to me that, even the most callous among us wouldn’t break up with someone simply by de-friending them. Certainly a brief email would seem to be in order.

I can go on and on regaling you with stories of inappropriate Facebook behavior and horror stories of privacy invasion.

I won’t, but I could.

Instead I’ll note that Facebook is like a loaded gun. In properly trained hands it is no more dangerous than Grandma’s cookies. But, in the possession of an idiot, well, jail time is a predictable result. As ANI, of the Thaindian News reports, that’s exactly what happened in New Zealand recently.

A man in New Zealand has been jailed after he posted a photograph of his naked ex-girlfriend on social networking site Facebook.

Joshua Simon Ashby, 20, a painter, was sentenced to four months’ prison in Wellington District Court after he pleaded guilty to a charge of distributing indecent matter and six others of threatening to kill, wilful damage, theft of the woman’s clothes, and assault, the New Zealand Herald reported.

According to the Dominion Post newspaper, it is believed to be the first time someone has been sentenced for a crime committed using Internet social media, under the morality and decency section of the Crimes Act.

Judge Andrew Becroft said Ashby posted the photo in an “irresponsible drunken jealous rage” after the break-up of their five-month relationship.

On July 23 he messaged her: “I’m going to kill you” and “Dead bitch” and then posted a naked photograph of her to her Facebook page.

It was initially visible to 218 of her friends but Ashby then made it publicly available and changed her password.

Police and Facebook authorities shut down the woman’s account after 12 hours.

Defence lawyer Leah Davison said Ashby knew he needed to deal with problems around drugs and alcohol and behaving in a “very immature manner” when angry and upset.

The rational among us realize that this guy’s a moron who needs serious psychological counselling and, maybe, lots of medication. The rest will blame Facebook.

Some may even question the young lady’s decision that caused her to end up naked in front of a camera. Me? I laud her for that. Everyone likes mementos and I’m no exception. But that doesn’t give me the right to share those mementos with strangers.

No matter how you view events like this, just remember that Facebook is a tool, like a hammer or a saw. Used wisely it can build great things.

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