I have been exiled from Facebook Land, a status that really should have a status bar all its own. Actually, it was just one post that got summarily banished — but still…
Facts of the case: I posted, not long ago, a brief story of interesting discoveries made by the Gerald P. Murphy Cancer Foundation that were reported in a segment on MSNBC. The foundation, headed by Dr. David Waters, DVM, PhD, works to extend longevity in pets and people through collection of vast amounts of data, much of it canine data. The news involved a 13-year-old Rottweiler named Kona.
PETA strongly supports the work of the Gerald P. Murphy Foundation. I thought I’d throw that into this report. The earlier post didn’t mention PETA, but it was clear about this fact: the foundation collects data, it does not conduct experiments using animals. The story was about clues to longevity found through data analysis.
Oh, well — dogs and research were mentioned, and flags went up somewhere in cyberspace.
The post was reported as abusive. Facebook summarily removed the whole thing, and anyone who encountered the link on my Facebook page was greeted with the message that I had been cited for abuse. No way could whoever reported me have actually read the piece.
We come now to a small detail in the U.S. Constitution usually called the confrontation clause, something about facing one’s accuser – or at least knowing what one is accused of. The framers of the Constitution didn’t know about Facebook, whose policy apparently is if someone, anyone, thinks you’ve done a bad, you’re off the page, and that’s the end of that. (You want to talk to someone about it? Try finding a Facebook face you might be able to face, virtually or otherwise.)
I have no immediate plans to sue Facebook. It seems in a way a badge of honor – I mean, how many people to you know who’ve had a post kicked off of Facebook? I am a little sorry about those folks who missed learning of an innovative nonprofit thanks to someone who didn’t bother to do so.
But now that this post is headed to my Facebook status bar, and includes the magic word combination, we wonder if I will be doubly banished.