Woman "Murdered For Facebook Status" -- Or Because Her Estranged Husband Was Nuts

from the when-reality-isn't-as-interesting-as-your-headline dept

"Wife murdered for Facebook status," screams the headline on the BBC News site. "A man murdered his estranged wife after becoming 'enraged' when she changed her marital status on Facebook to 'single'," it goes on to say, after a man in England was convicted of killing his estranged wife who wouldn't respond to any of his attempts to contact her. Apparently changing the Facebook status was the final straw, but to say she was murdered because of it seems like little more than an overly ambitious attempt to craft a really juicy headline. This woman was murdered because her estranged husband went nuts; Facebook was hardly an accessory. While this may not seem like a huge deal, it's these sorts of stories that spring politicians into action against technology, blaming it for society's ills while ignoring the real underlying problems. I mean, if people are getting killed for their Facebook status, surely we need to ban Facebook statuses, right? To protect the children?


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    identicon
    Devil Box, Jan 23rd, 2009 @ 7:05pm

    Yep

    I'm all up for banning facebook statuses... to protect are children from wasting all their time on that devil box

     

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      Heywood, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 9:33am

      Re: Yep

      That should be "our", not "are". Things like that make you look like a jerkoff. Jerkoff.

       

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      Zack, Jan 12th, 2010 @ 4:22pm

      Re: Yep

      This is just one of those 'teens' talking, but that devil box happens to be made of some of the same technology that saves lives depends on. And besides, since when is it a bad thing to socialize with friends? the fact that it happens to be electronic may not be ideal, but it allows for better impromptu event planning and networking and things of that nature... It really makes life easier if you use it right... If i forget what an assignment is, i ask what it is on my status... minutes later I have the answer, and i can finish my homework... Like any piece of technology, Facebook, when used correctly, can make your life easier. It's no 'devil box' you twit.

       

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    Lonnie E. Holder, Jan 23rd, 2009 @ 7:22pm

    Except...it happened.

    According to authorities, the change in Facebook status was the last straw, and was the trigger that initiated the man's actions. Sure, the guy had issues. It could have been any number of things that set the guy off. In this case, the guy decided to go look at his wife's Facebook status and there is was. The headline could just as easily have read "Man Kills Over Underwear" or "Man Kills Because of Newspaper Personal." The headline describes what happened. No sense in trying to spin it. Seems like we already have enough spin doctors.

     

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      PaulT (profile), Jan 23rd, 2009 @ 11:20pm

      Re: Except...it happened.

      Not that other "news" sources won't try to spin it that way, of course. The BBC are an absolute bastion of calm compared to some news outlets - for example, look at the way The Sun (sadly, the biggest-selling English language newspaper in the world) spins it:

      http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/article2167796.ece

       

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        Nick, Jan 25th, 2009 @ 12:51pm

        Re: Re: Except...it happened.

        Yeah! That BBC is definitely a bastion of no spin, honor, and upstanding journalism: http://curry.mevio.com/?p=1471

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Jan 26th, 2009 @ 7:31am

          Re: Re: Re: Except...it happened.

          That post you linked to was kinda pointless. At no point did I think, "hey, this is exactly what he said word for word." I viewed it as, "hey, here are multiple phrases from a speech." I found no problem realizing that the phrases didn't come one after the other. It was obviously edited. Did you want the entire speech in the beginning? It was an intro for a video about the environment and they picked a couple phrases that Obama said about green topics.

          I have no problem with the article's headline. The problem I have is with how people will interpret it. I've seen headlines where someone kills someone over something stupid and its in the headline. The reason those aren't a problem is that its already accepted that the reasoning for the killing was stupid. Here though, I feel like some people might misinterpret it and put some blame on Facebook.

           

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 4:17pm

      Re: Except...it happened.

      Carlo pointed out the absence of the man being labeled as nuts.

      But, Brittan has an idiotic law called the Anti Social Behaviour Act of 2003. It has the power to make individual behaviours, and not the act of the crime, illegal.

      It's not difficult to imagine this being positioned for political theater, with goals to expand the legal definition so it covers behaviours or actions to Facebook profiles.

      After all, if we accept that the murder wasn't committed by a mad man, but by anti-social actions brokered by Facebook, well, Facebook will need to be regulated, and let's not even start with what that means.

       

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        Lonnie E. Holder, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 6:01am

        Re: Re: Except...it happened.

        The article stated that the man became "enraged." Does that not indicate to you that the man allowed his emotions to overcome logic and reason? Somehow I do not see a member of law enforcement coming out and saying he was "nuts," so they said he was enraged instead.

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 3:19am

    You have entire societies banning firearms under the same idea. If you just take away everything that a sociopath can use to hurt others, no one gets hurt.

    The problem is those laws are like DRM. Your sociopaths always find some other thing to go crazy with. Meanwhile, the regular citizens have their freedoms and choices taken away.

    Obviously, hackers aren't sociopaths, since hacking often benefits society, but in relation to the law, I think the analogy works.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 5:10am

    Then again if your article title hadn't contained the words "Murdered For Facebook Status" I wouldn't have read it.
    Perhaps these silly titles are designed to encourage people to read a non-story - shocking isn't it ?

     

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    Blatant Coward, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 6:51am

    Kids these days.

    These children are too damn hard to protect, let's ban them instead. Much easier.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 7:23am

      Re: Kids these days.

      You my good sir might just be onto something here! Maybe we should ban the children and idiot politicians at the same time. Kill two birds with one large boulder

       

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      ha!, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 4:34pm

      Re: Kids these days.

      Future generations will thank us.

       

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    Susan Clemens, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 7:50am

    the real reason...

    The real reason for the murder was domestic violence. It could have just as easily been too much salt inthe supper or the bathroom towels not hung to his exact specifications.

    We can't ban everything that is going to set off a person who is looking for an excuse to vent rage.

    Giving lip-service to his excuses is deplorable.

    Let's look at banning domestic violence in stead.

     

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      Lonnie E. Holder, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 8:38am

      Re: the real reason...

      We can't ban everything that is going to set off a person who is looking for an excuse to vent rage.

      lol...True. Then we would have to ban Techdirt.

       

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    jrtcs, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 9:14am

    Won't somebody please think of the children ?!

     

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    JT, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 10:41am

    I Don't Agree

    Personally I think we need to get politicians that have a clue and are, at least, somewhat in touch with reality. They represent us as a whole but these lifetime politicians couldn't tell you how society works outside of their office and aids. Unfortunately we screwed things badly in this past election and put a majority in that wants to ban everything and will probably get their wishes on a lot of things.

     

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    Anonymous, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 1:37pm

    Yea I agree, I am 11 years old and I just put my Facebook status as "single" and my girl friend just comes over here and beats me half to death and tells me if I ever left her she would... Anyway I support a ban on this, I hate not being able to get away from that bitch, she needs to get back in the kitchen were she belongs. Fucking Cunt

     

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 4:30pm

      Re:

      You need to grow some balls, Son.

       

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        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 6:13pm

        Re: Re:

        Hi Anonymous,
        Seems you've strayed a little away from your usual stomping grounds. So let me get this right, you're 11 years old, getting beat up by your GF, while also dropping the F'ing C's?

        Well, whoa, Big man. Slow down. I feel bad for you, because someone let you down. It may sound weird, but you need someone to look up to. Have you found a role model, or someone who you feel can help you sort things out?
        Geez, I know this sounds corny, but years ago, I found that school's retired police officers were full of great stories if you you ask them. They were nothing like the stories my old man had, who had been with the force for 45 years.

        "Duni, akwe tu" my friend.

        To those so-called "Men" out there-
        I won't even begin to start with where so many have been let down. Whatever happened to the idea of having a positive male role model in our kids lives? My my my. Things have changed, haven't they? If you can't be a positive role model in your own kids lives, then how do you expect anything other than Government Intervention in everyone's personal life?

         

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    •  
      identicon
      szjkcDZHUsx, May 2nd, 2012 @ 12:08pm

      Re:

      that's crazy

       

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  •  
    identicon
    Bunker Truck, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 1:48pm

    Too much bandwidth

    This is a real problem. People die because of their internet connections. What we need is more people, not more bandwidth.

     

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  •  
    identicon
    HL, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 3:24pm

    They don't give a rat's ass about the children. It's meant to give them more page hits so their unique visits on their ad-hit is up. Afterall you just linked to them.

    "Aliens invade United States" vs "Mexicans invade United States"
    Which would you rather read? =P

     

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    identicon
    Mojo Bone, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 5:59pm

    "Let's look at banning domestic violence instead."

    I banned domestic violence three weeks ago, are none of you people paying attention? Maybe I'll have to make it illegal, now, too.

     

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    identicon
    Vae Victis, Jan 24th, 2009 @ 8:38pm

    Problem Solving

    If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem. We must put our heads together as a race of people and come up with a real solution to the stupidity the lerks behind close doors. Making smart comments and ridiculous allegations about who's to blame and who to protect solves nothing. Sure you can ban everything in the world but will that really solve the behavior of individuals who suffer from mental disorders?

     

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2009 @ 2:30am

      Re: Problem Solving

      Vae,

      While I agree to a point with your ideology, I believe that there is a point where people need to "let go". Do you not agree? Understanding that most American families have a Good Male Role model, which helps to create a balance during K-12 development. Your comment seems a little odd, and out of place, especially for a website called "TechDirt" where we discuss techology issues.

      I would highly recommend speaking with a counselor who can provide better ideas than any of us can provide here. IANAC but sometimes there is a need is left unmet.

      Outside of this and more importantly, I am curious at which point should a Victim Mentality be considered a negative to the raising of the child?

      Vae, understand that at the same time, there are thousands of kids that grow up without a father figure and are able to be good people in this society. But some times, people are unable to play the dual-paternal role, and some necessities are left unfounded. Is there some secondary or tertiary need that's unmet?

      Please consider taking this discussion to a site that specializes in this and is better equipped to provide you with proper answers.

       

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  •  
    identicon
    Susan Clemens, Jan 25th, 2009 @ 7:55am

    harrassment...restraining order maybe

    "... a man in England was convicted of killing his estranged wife who wouldn't respond to any of his attempts to contact her."
    More needs to be done to recognize those at risk and how to take steps to protect them.

    The fact that he repeatedly tried to contact her even though he knew his attentions where unwanted is a red flag that his wishes took precidence over hers (in his mind). This type of behaviour almost always escalates.

    Had she sought out a restraining order? Was this taken seriously by the police?

    Facebook would do well to use this as an opportunity to educate.

    "The PR industry has an important role to play in helping companies identify and manage risks that could damage their reputation." Nick Purdom of PR Week

    http://iml.jou.ufl.edu/projects/Fall02/Susi/tylenol.htm

     

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      identicon
      John Doe, Jan 26th, 2009 @ 4:09am

      Re: harrassment...restraining order maybe

      Had she sought out a restraining order? You are kidding, right? How does a paper document protect anyone? Is is bullet proof? You know what they say; when seconds count the police are only minutes away. Police are only historians; they do not protect people. They show up to record the events after the fact.

       

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        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 7:32pm

        Re: Re: harrassment...restraining order maybe

        Women with ex-husbands like this should seek a 12 bore and lessons on how to use it from an SAS member, not a restraining order.

         

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  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2009 @ 3:54pm

    Eyes are off of video games

    at least for another 5 minutes.

     

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    identicon
    Virtual Web Symphony, Jan 25th, 2009 @ 11:19pm

    Can't blame facebook

    Is it worthwhile we should debate and spend time on this topic. Facebook might have just been an excuse. There must be something else brewing in between the two. Poor job by BBC.

     

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    identicon
    John Doe, Jan 26th, 2009 @ 4:00am

    Guns don't kill people; FaceBook does!

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 26th, 2009 @ 5:31am

    ex-husband was nuts!
    It just happens the facebook status set him off. Just could have been his morning bacon and eggs talk to him. It is impossible to know what might set off a nut job like this.

     

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      identicon
      Vae Victis, Jan 26th, 2009 @ 5:41am

      Re:

      The Horrors Of What We Know As The World Wide Web Is To Blame. The Devil Lerks In Cyberspace And That's Why We're All Doomed.

       

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  •  
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    fasat, Jan 26th, 2009 @ 9:36am

    Figures the media blames the woman for changing her status, not the man for being a lunatic. I know it was just a title but blameing the woman? Really?

     

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    fasat, Jan 26th, 2009 @ 9:36am

    Figures the media blames the woman for changing her status, not the man for being a lunatic. I know it was just a title but blameing the woman? Really?

     

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    •  
      identicon
      Lonnie E. Holder, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 5:58am

      Re:

      Did you even read the article. Here is a quote from the article:

      Fiona Cortese, of the Crown Prosecution Service, said: "Richardson became enraged when Sarah changed her marital status on Facebook to single and decided to go and see her as she was not responding to his messages.

      Note that Fiona Cortese, a female law enforcement official, factually states that Richardson became enraged when his wife changed her marital status. The "media" did not "blame" anyone, but reported what law enforcement official reported to them. Enraged appears to indicate the man succumbed to loss of personal control, allowing his emotions to over come his logic. Seems like an indication that he had some issues to me.

       

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  •  
    identicon
    GHynson, Jan 26th, 2009 @ 2:39pm

    Blah,

    We have to ban the INTERNET!!!
    It's for the children,..

     

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      identicon
      errr, Mar 17th, 2009 @ 10:46am

      Re: Blah,

      u eva heard of stickin child safety on ur net u can change the age range to block 18+ love also block websites ...fuk banning the net u muppet!

       

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  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 7:27pm

    BBC Says: Women Never Learn to Accept Their Place

    The BBC seems to be saying that women should be more careful in how they conduct their personal affairs that are viewable by the public. When did the Taliban take over the BBC journalism department?

     

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    •  
      identicon
      Lonnie E. Holder, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 5:36am

      Re: BBC Says: Women Never Learn to Accept Their Place

      Are we reading the same article? The one I read was mostly made of quotes from the prosecutor and the woman's family. The article is completely void of what I would consider to be a judgment of the woman's behavior. If anything, it implied that the guy was nuts.

       

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  •  
    identicon
    iNvEStMeNt CoMpLiaNcE, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 9:15am

    What has the world come to?

     

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    identicon
    Yudianta Medio Simbolon, Feb 24th, 2009 @ 2:40am

    Women should be more careful.....once their husband are very jealous!!!

     

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    woteva, Mar 17th, 2009 @ 10:41am

    wtf lol this story ay 2 do wid kids... fair enuf thy hav facebook wot cuz a man killed his wife cuz hes a nuta cuz she had her status as single ent gt fuk all 2 do wid kids usin facebook

    thy woe b able 2 gt ne ideas or wotevaa...thy cor c wot thy wrote... status updates am 2 do wid wot ur doin ryt nw etc.,
    i mean i knw bare ppl me included hu r in a relationship n my geeza has gt his facebook set 2 single mines in a relationship so fukin wot!! i doe care it ay 2 do wid chatin up ppl online....


    n yeee kids these days thyr all bad enit... fuk me man gt a lyf... kids r followin violence n wot nt thru how the world is 2day bcuz the elder ppl (20s-30s) r gtin thm in2 this kinda shit 2 strt havoc on the streets... it isnt all dwn 2 drugs its wot thyv learnt frm ther elders.. so ye bollax 2 tht, thy wudnt knw neway bout lyf if thy didnt luk up2 ne1


    n if thy ay gt no1 2 luk up2 thn thy obvs learn ther own way in stealing or woteva kids hu ay gt family or home do...

     

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  •  
    identicon
    Billy, Apr 23rd, 2009 @ 6:53pm

    this

    whoever thinks we should ban facebook statuses is a dumb mother fucker and he should go fuckin buy a brain

     

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    identicon
    mark, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 10:47pm

    bbc bullshit

    just don't read the BBC. simple

     

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