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Facebook: Good Or Bad?

Do you use Facebook?  If you’re reading this then there’s a good chance that you probably do. Good things can come out of Facebook, keeping up to date with family members requires minimal effort and sometimes that’s good.   Re-uniting with old school mates is always a thrill! Lost dogs are found and so are criminals as local police departments post video and photos of the wanted, and yes if you’re so fortunate enough, a good soul mate is found at times.

But in the case of missing Glenburn teenager Nichole Cable we are now aware that very bad things can come via Facebook too.

It’s been reported that Nichole possibly met someone in her driveway that she had been communicating on Facebook with, someone using an alias account, and now after a week of tortuous frustration for family members, police and the local community, her body has been found.

It seems that after talking to someone on Facebook for a while, even a total stranger, some people develop a trust.  Some people trust the so called investor to take their money, some people trust telling all of their Internet friends that they’ll be leaving the house for a week and going on vacation, and then some people trust a new found digital friend to take them for a ride.

Some people will tell you that digital isn’t real, it’s all on your computer screen, it’s not really there.

Maybe this gives the guilty a false sense of security, as they bully their fellow class mates on Facebook, or as the pedophile down loads child porn from a file sharing site, until someone knocks on the door.

Maybe this gives the young and innocent a false sense of security, sitting in the safety of one’s home and playing on one’s machine. Until someone knocks on the door.

This week Detective Dotty Small of the Ellsworth Police Department posted this on the department’s Facebook page:  In light of recent events and a message from one of our citizens I am asking you all to sit down with your children and go through their friends list on Facebook.   If they do not know the person or you don’t know the person then delete them.  Also check their profile to make sure it is private.  It is not automatically private if they put their age as an adult and we all know, sometimes kids do that!!  The other thing to look for is a second profile that THEY might have, it will be a nickname or something close to their real name.  It might be a good time to go through your own list as well.  Thanks and stay safe out there!!

Those are good words to live by and to take action with.

Digital is real.  The Internet is essentially a series of numbers that are laid out by a worldwide computer network.  Every machine has an IP address, and every State in the nation has a Computer Crimes Task Force.  So if need be, you can be found as you sit there typing in your little corner of the world.

So I guess Facebook is good….for good people, if it is used and monitored wisely.  And, Facebook is good for bad people, until someone knocks on the door.

What do you think?  Let me know in the “comments” section below.

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