Friday, February 10, 2012

Facebook Feud Takes Tragic Turn

By Cesar Ortiz
It was a matter of time, now we are facing a double murder and two detained suspects. Although this is not the first time that people have been killed with events regarding social networks, this is a flag that sour events involving social media are escalating and that we have to take the matter more seriously as a society and as parents. In this instance two suspects have been charged with the killing of two victims. The motive? Removing a person from the facebook friend list.

According to the Johnson City Press, in Mountain City, Tennessee a father who was upset after a Tennessee couple deleted his adult daughter as a friend on Facebook has been charged in the shooting deaths of the couple, authorities said. The victims had complained to police that Marvin's Potter's daughter was harassing them after they deleted her as a friend on the social networking site, Johnson County Sheriff Mike Reece stated. Potter, 60, has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder in last week's slayings of Billy Payne Jr. and his girlfriend, Billie Jean Hayworth. The couple was shot to death in their Mountain City home in the far northeast corner of the state.

Facebook does not issue a direct notification message that someone has removed you from his or her friend list but provides, of course, means for a facebook user to know who is in the user friends list or that someone had made a change (if you have the option enabled). Normally, if we are removed from a facebook friend list we take the removal as an action taken by the account holder exercising his or her privilege. That is the sensible and logical way to take it. The reasoning being, is that if I or my relative was removed, the user must have had some valid reason for the removal. It is the user facebook account after all. The reasoning is that if we or a relative are removed from a facebook friends list, the person that removed us or a relative will be missing all the attributes we, a relative or a friend have to offer to social media and to the specific news feed.

This sad event must serve a warning that we have to be more sensitive to our peers and close relatives concern that someone has done a detrimental action affecting their lives using social media. We have to project that Internet Social Media is just another form of communications like newspapers, radio or TV and as such, people have the right to express themselves, even if they are wrong. The event teaches us that we have to dig deeper into the effects of social media related to human nature and conduct. It also teaches us how variable the values are in our society.


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