Professor Sang Nam: Facebook is putting many vulnerable teens at risk by lifting ban on gruesome videos

Professor Sang Nam

Professor Sang Nam

According to Facebook’s new policy, now users can post gruesome videos as long as users do not celebrate the action or they can post gruesome videos to condemn the action.

Sang Nam, associate professor of communications in the department of film, video and interactive media in the School of Communications at Quinnipiac University, is available to comment.

“”I’m deeply concerned about our youth who will be exposed to these videos. These gruesome videos online, especially on Facebook, are just a click away from our teens. It only takes few seconds to view such graphical videos, but the psychological damage might be permanent. These videos are harsh to adults, and it can leave a permanent trauma on our youth,” said Nam.

“Facebook’s decision seems to be based on its belief that responsible users can decide what to watch and what not to watch and Facebook doesn’t intervene on people’s freedom of speech and people’s right to have access to information online. However, these gruesome videos are just a click away, and one click can hurt our youth, who might be too young to fully understand the consequences of online actions.

“Some might say the Internet has a self-correcting mechanism and gruesome videos would be removed by concerned users. It is true in a sense, but Facebook is risking many vulnerable teens by lifting its ban on gruesome videos. A self-correcting mechanism still takes time and effort to put aside these graphical materials. Facebook might not want to be seen as a company that strips someone’s freedom of speech and intervenes or controls users’ access to information online, but it is wrong and irresponsible for Facebook to lift its ban on gruesome videos without creating a proper warning. Again, with one click, our teens could be exposed to these videos, and it can leave a permanent damage in their mind.

“It’s ironic that Facebook still bans the children breast-feeding images due to exposed woman’s breasts, but you can watch the videos of decapitations on Facebook. Which leaves more damages in youth’s mind? I think we all know, except Facebook.”

To speak to Nam, please call John Morgan, associate vice president for public relations at Quinnipiac, at 203-206-4449 (cell) or 203-582-5359 (office).


Categories: School of Communications

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