A Melbourne, Australia man learns the hard way not to take selfies in Target.
One of the universe's most hated villains posing with Darth Vader. (via Naked Security)
What should have been a fun photo to surprise his children with turned into a social media minefield for one Australian man. While shopping in a Target store in Knox, a Melbourne suburb, the man spotted a cardboard cut-out of Darth Vader. Knowing his three kids are into the geek stuff, the man thought he would pose in front of the Sith lord to take his very first "selfie," or a cell phone self portrait photograph, as we used to call them in 2009.
This particular cardboard Vader was right across from a video screen playing "Frozen." Like all video screens playing "Frozen," there were unattended children glued to it. Our selfie-snapper told the children "I'll only be a second, I'm taking a selfie to send to my kids," then took his fun photo and went on his way. Soon, his face was all over Facebook, and not in a fun way.
Originally captioned on Facebook "OK, people, take a look at this creep." Ironically, the creep is behind the camera. (via The Daily Mail)
The mother of the two girls took her own photo of the man, claiming he was taking photos of her children and escaping before he was caught. Security was not able to stop our first-time selfie artist, so she took the next illogical step: Making up shit on social media.
How to ruin a man's life with one unsubstantiated accusation. (via Naked Security)
The now-deleted Facebook post spread like a bush fire, and soon the man's good name was in ruins. Once the man spoke to police and proved his innocence, a retraction post was made by police, but only had 2% as many views as the original. The falsely-accused man and his family are waiting on an apology from the woman whose vigilante actions ruined his reputation.
Social media is great at being fast, but it is also great at being filled with horseshit. Unverified information and false accusations can not only spread through a city in less than a day, it also gives online vigilantes ideas on how to exact their own revenge. Typically, we laugh when evil mega-corporations or hate groups get hacked. It's fun to see justice meted out by someone who is not a policeman, but it's socially destructive. Society has to do the busy work of finding out whether or not a man is actually a pedophile or if he's just using a smart phone.
Learning to use new technology can be fun or frustrating, but be careful with those cameras, old folks. Ask a young person for help, but be careful. You don't know what kind of creeps are out there.