Creeps of the Week – April 19, 2010

It was a relatively quiet week for “facecrooks” this week. A handful of stories were picked up by the mainstream media, one involved the Facebook page of Osama Bin Laden. The Osama fan page was posted on March 25 and was taken down on April 16. The page attracted over 1,000 followers and posted speeches and recording of Islamic extremists. It isn’t certain if the page was a hoax or maintained by those close to Bin Laden. It is a common practice for fake Facebook pages to spring up for various celebrities and public figures. Facebook has access to the email and ip address of fan page creators, and they often work closely with authorities to shut down inappropriate, troubling or counterfeit pages.
The full story can be found here:

Sadly, cyber bullying is a prominent topic each week. The Alabama legislature passed a bill this week requiring schools to have an anti-bullying policy in place by July 1st. The bill also makes it illegal for students to harass, bully, intimidate, harm or threaten to harm fellow students. 44 states have passed anti-bullying legislation in attempt to combat this online epidemic. The article also explores the link between depression, bullying and suicide. Researchers have found that students who are already depressed when bullied are much more likely to commit suicide than those who had shown no signs of depression before being bullied. It is important for parents, teachers and students to understand the symptoms of depression. You can read more about this story here:

Facebook and divorce has received much media attention over the past year or so. This latest article explores the dangers that married couples may face as partners try to locate and reconnect with childhood sweethearts. Earlier in the year, a British law firm stated that Facebook was cited in 20 percent of divorce petitions filed in 2009. Very little research has been completed to date regarding online behavior and its impact on relationships. The complete story can be found here:

Dozens of female Texas teens of the Fort Bend County School District became the target of a Facebook page titled, “The Whimsical Girls of Fort Bend ISD.” The page contains a “naughty list” and claims the girls are promiscuous (to put it nicely). Parents complained to the district and Facebook has removed the page. The D.A.’s office determined no crime had been committed; however school officials said the culprit(s) could face expulsion if and when they are identified. Check out the full story here:

University of Minnesota Duluth officials are investigating an incident involving two female students carried on a two-way conversation in a classroom via Facebook. The racial slurs began when a black female student entered the classroom. Unbelievably, the conversation was displayed on the Facebook walls of the two perpetrators. The incident was reported to the Office of Equal Opportunity and an investigation is pending. Read the full story here:

Our last story featured this week involves New York City teens and their nefarious online activities. A recent survey revealed that one in six teenagers have tried hacking into other people’s computers and Facebook accounts. Seven percent stated that they hacked for money and six percent said they view hacking as a viable career. Another disturbing statistic is that 40 percent think hacking is cool. About half said they did it for fun, while a third said they did it out of curiosity. Read more:

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