Monday, November 19, 2012

When a Picture Goes Viral

Social networking is a funny thing. Nothing is ever really private. You can post a picture on your Facebook page for your "friends" (and I put that in quotations because if you're like me, you only really KNOW a small fraction of those people in real life) and those friends can then "share" that picture on their page, in groups they are part of, via email, text message, twitter, instagram or 500 other ways. Heck, if someone is feeling really ambitious they can even print out said picture and save it forever. If your picture is good enough, or bad enough, it can literally be spread around the globe in a matter of hours.

Most of us will never have a picture that goes viral. We'll never have our 15 minutes of fame. In many ways, that's a good thing. Especially when it comes to people like Lindsey Stone. She went to Arlington National Cemetery recently with some coworkers and clients. While at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, where silence and respect is requested for our fallen Soldiers, Lindsey thought it would be funny to pose for a picture being... well... the opposite of that.

Her friends called her out on it (what are friends on FB for, anyway?) and she brushed it off saying...

And then... the picture went viral. Quickly.

Because she was at Arlington with her coworkers and on the clock, and because Lindsey tightened down her privacy settings on her facebook page (understandably! I'd run and hide too!), people flocked to her company's facebook page and they let their opinions be heard. Thousands of opinions... fire her, beat her, shoot her, make her apologize, and on and on and on. Some were heartfelt from Soldiers, Veterans, spouses and parents of fallen military members. Others were just... Americans... disgusted by Lindsey's blatant lack of respect for men and women who have died for our country. 

About an hour ago, her company issued a very blanket statement regarding Lindsey's picture saying that her photo in no way reflects the opinions of their staff... but Lindsey (AND her friend who took the photo) ARE staff so that doesn't really make sense, does it? In the meantime, I'm sure their lawyers are hard at work typing up some very legal apology that will be released tomorrow morning... and the comments keep pouring in... almost 1,000 in the last hour alone. 

Lindsey Stone got her 15 minutes of fame. I don't think that was her intention, but it happened thanks to the wonders of social networking and technology. Sadly for her, it wasn't a GOOD 15 minutes, and it's not over yet. I will not post her photo here as I want to keep this blog G rated, but if you haven't seen it and you really want to, Facebook or Google will get you there. 

Think before you post pictures online... think before you TAKE pictures. Think before you choose to disrespect our Soldiers. The good Lord gave you a brain for a reason. Use it! 


Lynn said...

Never know when there's something like this if people should reply or not. If nobody had said anything, the photo would have faded away. But now...
Continuing to pray!
Psalms 139:4-6 For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether. Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.
My email address

Unknown said...

Thank you for your blog post -- as a retired US Navy veteran, I was appalled by what I saw, and more infuriated that this was done by another ADULT (30+ years old) who should have known better.

To think that she works with disabled adults, is disgusting (at best).

I have friends who are buried at Arlington, and they DESERVE so much more than she could ever give them, and us.


Many blessings for a wonderful Thanksgiving to you and your family.

momof4as said...

For every person like this, there are so many more people who are grateful for our military and understand that they and their families make sacrifices to keep us all safe.

I think you said are scheduled to have a procedure today so I am keeping you in my prayers. Hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving and that Frank is home SOON!

McCammons said...

All I can say right now is Amen. I understand joking, but not with something like that. I haven't seen the picture, not sure I really want to look it up, but it's sad. There is a line and it seems to have been crossed.

Esther said...

It's was already taken down off fb, I hear on a news story. She's written a formal apology, and said it was not meant as a disrespect to the military- she was being silly about the words (shouting where it said quiet, and Not showing respect). It's truly sad in so many ways. Kids today must watch their step, but SO must our 4 star generals!!!!

Mama2Kayden said...

I read that she got fired from her job.

Jen T. said...

She got fired. I got a good lesson for Emily about stupid pranks.