I read an article in the paper today about a family that won a settlement after suing the California Highway patrol. These types of suits always catch my eye so I was surprised that I had missed the precipitating event. Five years ago after an argument with her father, an 18 year old took her father’s Porsche and sped off. She got on the freeway, crashed at a high rate of speed and was almost decapitated. If that’s not bad enough, pictures of the crash and the body made it onto the Internet.
The suit charged the CHP with being negligent with the photos and the family won a couple of million dollars. This is a horrible story that gets worse. Now, the pictures are on the internet forever, if you Google the girls name they pop up, I know, I tried which is why I won’t print the name in my blog. In the article the family said they rarely use the Internet for fear of accidently coming across the photos. I had to sit and think about that. Because it’s their last name that will bring the photos up. How would your web browsing be affected if you had to worry about seeing something like that every time you plugged your name into a search? What would you do, change your name?
The website I saw is a gross website that posts pictures of bodies, the more gross the better, I guess. Decency should make them takes the photos off the site, or at least remove the connection to the name, but that won’t happen. What’s on the web stays on the web. I doubt the CHP employee who leaked the photos meant for this horrible situation to develop, and now there is nothing for the family to do but take the money and hope it brings meager comfort.
I once accidentally posted a blog that was not complete. It was basically just me thinking out loud about something and I neglected to change the visibility status and it went up. A couple of hours later I discovered the mistake and deleted the blog, but I’m not certain who saw it or read it. It wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t polished or edited. It still bugs me that people did see it because I wasn’t paying attention. I couldn’t imagine it floating out there forever and it was just a blog post.
I’ll bet there are people out there who don’t think and post stuff on the web, not realizing that it is likely to float around in cyberspace forever. It could be dangerous, embarrassing or just stupid. Definitely makes me think before I post.