AU MA Social Media

A class blog about social media.

Why are we Friending Murderers?

Posted by jorogrady on July 21, 2012

I have long felt that being Facebook friends means next to nothing, in terms of who you actually consider a friend.  Given the Huffington Post’s recent article, James Holmes, Facebook User With Same Name As Suspected Shooter Receives Influx Of Friend Requests, I certainly hope other people feel similarly.  The James Holmes in the article gives the people friending him the benefit of the doubt, in a public post he put on his own Facebook wall, saying “I appreciate the fact that you are trying to become better-informed about the occurrences last night in Aurora…”  This theory is a nice one, that people are friending something they suspect to be a mass murderer, in the hopes of discovering something about this person that could help make sense of the insanity behind his actions.

However, as the James Holmes of this article correctly points out, if he were the James Holmes suspected of shooting up an Aurora theater, he would be in police custody and unable to accept or deny anyone’s friend requests.  Which leads me to wonder about these people’s motives.  Is it interesting to say you are Facebook friends with a murderer?  As we’ve learned in recent classes, it’s possible to learn a lot from a person’s Facebook profile, in terms of who they are friends with, what their likes and dislikes are, and more.  So why, given the potential to make these links between people who are Facebook friends, would it would be cool to have your Facebook page linked to that of a suspected murderer?

I suppose the best that we can hope for is that the James Holmes of the HuffPo article is correct, and people are just searching for answers.

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One Response to “Why are we Friending Murderers?”

  1. Alex Jones said

    Natural curiosity of nosy people. They friend in order to gain access to the personal information of the murderer. Like most people on Facebook they only friend either to sell you something or stick their noses into your private life.

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