Oh dear, Facebook are in the news again. It seems the world is starting to realise what we in the police have known for a few years, that people will use whatever modern technology or innovations they can to get their own little seedy way.
As I posted recently, complaints about behaviour posted on Facebook makes up for a significantly disproportionate amount of police time. Two stories emerege this week of Facebook being a significant factor in two murders. In the first, Peter Chapman, 33, was jailed for a minimum of 35 years on Monday after confessing to the kidnap, rape and murder of 17-year-old Ashleigh Hall. He targeted the female via Facebook while pretending to be a teenage lad interested in meeting her.
In the other case Paul Bristol, 25, murdered Camille Mathurasingh, 27 after seeing her photos on Facebook with another male.
Police are criticising Facebook for failing to add a ‘panic’ button to its site where children can alert the authorities to suspected cases of grooming, despite many other social networking sites adopting the policy.
A quick trawl thrugh recent Facebook-related problems in the news this week comes up with:
- A bogus Vicoria Police (Australia) Facebook page used for gay sex-trawling & racist thuggery.
- A Facebook page set up to accuse an innocent man of being Jamie Bulger’s child-killer, John Venables.
- Australian Schools calling for police to deal with cyber-bullies who often use Facebook to bully their victims.
- The arrest of a 23-year-old teaching assistant alleged to have have sex with a 12-year-old pupil after he posted messages about it on Facebook.
- Riot police being called to deal with gatecrashers after a teenager’s party was adveryised on Facebook, again.
These are just the stories which reach the national news, there are thousands of complaints about Facebook-related behaviour every day.
Notwithstanding that many Facebook-related complainants probably actually just need to ignore it & get on with their lives, there are lots of more serious matters. I’ve not had to investigate any complaints so I don’t know how receptive & quick they are to assist. Perhaps some of my readers could update me as to howÃÂ they generally get on. But I can’t help thinking that Facebook really doesn’t do enough to stamp down on unacceptable, dangerous or illegal behaviour.