18 April 2011

Facebook & 10 Years in Prison...


Cafe World and all those other games on Facebook are addictive, no doubt. However, I am not sure that they are that addictive that I would be even slightly tempted to leave a 13-month old baby in the bath by themselves while I go and cook some cakes or harvest a few crops in Farmville or even have a few 1-minute rounds of Bejeweled Blitz.

Shannon Johnson of Fort Lupton in northern Colorado was sentenced to 10 years in jail for allowing her 13-month old son to drown in the bath while she played Cafe World and check her status updates.

According to Johnson she wanted her son, Joseph, to be an independent baby and not be a "mama's boy". Also Johnson claims to have been traumatised as a child from constantly being told "no". Therefore, she was committed to never saying no to her own child. And, subsequently Johnson was claiming that little Joseph himself asked to be left alone in the bath.

Sadly, Johnson had been warned of the dangers of leaving an infant in the bath by themselves. This warning came from Johnson's own mother, but the advice was ignored and tragically it was little Joseph that paid the ultimate price.

The point of this post is not to bang on about Facebook or Mark Zuckerberg being ultimately responsible for Joseph's death because they facilitated Johnson's addiction. To the contrary, it is really about parenting and what constitutes good parenting and how we learn to be good parents. I have been wondering how, as parents, we learn to find that balance between allowing our children their independence and protecting them from the dangers that surround them?

The learning curve is steep.

3 comments:

Harry Nizam said...

Hi Rob,

It is the mother, not Facebook or it's founder, who should be blamed for her drowned baby. Only a very irresponsible and ignorant mom could ever left her 13 month old baby on the bath by himself.

Rob Baiton said...

@ Harry...

Spoken like a corporate lawyer defending a corporate client.

Contributory negligence? Just toying with the ideas here. Not saying it would ever work, but it might be worth throwing it out there.

Yes, ultimately the mother is responsible for leaving the baby by itself in the bath. Yet, once again, is there an argument to be made for the big corporate money spinner playing on the addictive behaviours of some in order to increase their profits.

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