It would seem the World Wide Web is the new Eden, replete with its own “tree of good and evil.” What many people seem not to realize is there’s a price to be paid, depending on the fruit you pick from which tree. As many news sites have learned, some the hard way, the laws that govern the conventional media for the most part also apply to the internet. This week, another social media scandal rocked Saint Lucia. On Wednesday “Chris King” posted that he/she had infected a local female that he identified. He ended his accompanying rant with a plea that if she came back to him/her all her medical and travel expenses would be taken care of. To further sweeten the weird offer was a marriage proposal. Hardly surprising, the post from hell drew widespread attention including this from the alleged victim: “Are you f****** kidding me? Why the f*** would you’ll run some bogus story about me that’s obviously spam…there’s gonna be some serious repercussions.” You know, food for the intellect!
The crazy post was soon taken down but not before it had been transmitted via other social media platforms. Yes, in the blink of an eye the matter had gone viral. Cyber bullying and revenge porn have become commonplace, with the victims usually women. It was just over a year ago that the STAR featured an article entitled “Is Revenge Porn Too Hot For Policy Makers?” The story cited cases both local and regional, and revealed how the problem was handled in other countries. There was hardly any official reaction.
However, it’s only fair to mention that on Tuesday this week Zachary Hippolyte of the RSLPF press relations department reminded citizens of the libel and defamation laws, as well as the provisions of the Computer Misuse Act. On Thursday the STAR reached out to the administrator of the earlier mentioned website used by Chris King to spread his/her HIV dirt. He claimed he had been unaware of the devil post until late that evening. He also felt he had been unfairly attacked, since he was not the original source, neither was his the only medium via which the information had been transmitted. He promised to apologize to the victim of the HIV post.
On Thursday the site’s administration posted this: “Today we have made changes to the group settings of St Lucia News Daily. Effective immediately all posts will be filtered through admin before going public, this is no longer an Open Group. Yesterday someone maliciously went out their way on several groups and pages including this one to attack someone. On behalf of SNDU, I would like to apologize to (name deleted), because had we seen that post any sooner, it would of (sic)never been on this page.
It’s sad how people abuse forums like this to sabotage people’s character. We are also looking for admins to assist, message me if anyone is interested.” Meanwhile, readers may well be wondering whether the official silence on the egregious misuse of the internet has anything to do with the fact that politicians and their hacks are among the worst offenders! In next week’s STAR two victims of revenge porn tell their tales of woe!