A 12 year old girl committed suicide in Polk County, Georgia, USA. The suicide was extremely gruesome, considering the fact that it was live streamed over Live.me, a video website. The video was shared repeatedly on social media, especially on Facebook and Youtube. She had apparently committed suicide as she had been sexually abused by a certain member of her family. She makes this confession in the video and then ties a rope on the tree outside her house. She apologizes for her actions and steps off the foothold, thus ending her life. A shocking thing to see online!!
The most shocking part was not her suicide, but it was Facebook’s inability to take down this video for upto 2 weeks. Youtube was able to take down this video almost immediately as it believed the content was extremely violent. The Police Department had received many angry messages from citizens as this video was still circulating online.
The Polk County Police Department said it was appalled by the shocking indifference of Facebook. Facebook was not needed to take down the video by law and hence they could not be forced to do so. They wondered how come Facebook took 2 weeks to do something that is the right thing to do, that is a decent thing to do. Also, Facebook also asked the Police if they were required by law to do so. It is because of this that they did not act fast and let the video circulate online.
According to its own policies, Facebook does not allow any content relating to suicide or any form of self injury to be active or even be available, so it is very shocking that this video was available for 2 weeks. What is really shocking here is how common citizens are now at the mercy of the policies of a few tech companies. Even the long arms of the law are unable to prevent these malpractices of the private companies.