From LiberalAmerica.org – Facebook land doesn’t get much worse than this.
Photos of Rehtaeh Parsons, a teenage Canadian girl who took her own life in April after photos of her rape went viral online and were used to bully her for nearly two years afterwards, showed up in a series of Facebook ads this week: Ads belonging to a dating site. The company who ran the ads, named ionechat.com, is a redirect that lead anyone clicking on the ad to be sent to a different site called be2.com.
After the ads were reported to Facebook, ionechat.com was banned from ever advertising on Facebook again, and subsequently took down their website. Anh Dung, the administrator of the ionechat.com site posted an apology before taking the site down that read exactly:
“The website is no longer working because I shut it down, I feel so guilty when I think of it and I don’t want to run it anymore, it’s just a simple site with 2 pages that I use to promote dating offer to make some money. I did not expect it to cause serious consequences. I feel very sorry for my mistake.
I’m so stressed right now so I can’t talk anymore.”
Be2.com still continues to operate at full capacity and has an active Facebook fan page that has not addressed the use of Rehtaeh Parsons’ underage photos used to advertise its site. Unlike the paid ads used by ionechat.com on Facebook in which a specific photo is uploaded to market the ad, sponsored stories or social context ads often use profiles photos of Facebook user’s friends to show them what their contacts are interested in or who they are fans of on Facebook.
In the case of Rehtaeh Parsons’ photos being used in dating site ads, ionechat.com would have had to manually upload the photos of Parsons to their ad account to be used. In short, the photos were not used by accident.
Facebook. Isn’t it a wonderful place?
- Rehtaeh Parsons’ family disgusted by dating ads featuring teen’s picture (globalnews.ca)
- Family of suicide victim Rehtaeh Parsons upset after her photo appears in Facebook dating ad (theprovince.com)
- Rehtaeh Parsons image appears on dating site advertisements (o.canada.com)
- Dating ad featuring Rehtaeh Parsons pulled (metronews.ca)
- Facebook sorry for ad showing photo of dead girl (kvue.com)