Thursday, August 1, 2013
Schoolgirl commit suicide over Facebook posts bullying
Facebook under investigation over video of 14-year-old Italian girl who leapt to her death following ‘cyber-bullying campaign’ Carolina Picchio fell to her death form her third-floor window in January Insulting video and photographs had been circulated over the internet Italian Parent’s Association has filed a criminal complaint against Facebook Eight teenagers are being questioned on suspicion of inciting of suicide
Facebook is being investigated over the death of a 14-year-old Italian girl who leapt from her third-floor bedroom window after bullying posts and a video of her appeared on the social media site.
Tragic Carolina Picchio, from Novara in Northern Italy, fell to her death in January this year, after insulting video and photographs of her were circulated over the internet. Eight teenagers, aged between 15 and 17 years old, are being questioned by magistrates on suspicion of inciting of suicide. A video of Miss Picchio looking the worse for wear in a bathroom at a party was uploaded to Facebook and remained on the site for several days.
The Italian Parent’s Association has now filed a criminal complaint against Facebook for its role in Miss Picchio’s death. Their director Antonio Affinita told the Daily Telegraph: ‘This is the first time a parent’s group has filed such a complaint against Facebook in Europe. An unflattering video of Miss Picchio looking the worse for wear in a bathroom at a party was uploaded to Facebook Abuse: The Italian Parent’s Association has now filed a criminal complaint against Facebook for its role in Miss Picchio’s death
‘Italian law forbids minors under 18 signing contracts, yet Facebook is effectively entering into a contract with minors regarding their privacy, without their parents knowing.’ The video is believed to have been posted shortly after Miss Picchio left her boyfriend. He had apparently used the site to insult her a few days earlier.
A note written to him which was found in her bedroom read: ‘Isn’t what you have done to me enough? You have made me pay too many times.’ Before she took her own life she posted a note on the site which read: ‘Forgive me if I am not strong. I cannot take it any longer.’ Some of the bullies are believed to have continued to post abuse about Miss Picchio even after her death. The offensive video is believed to have been posted shortly after Miss Picchio left her boyfriend. He had apparently used the site to insult her a few days earlier
Miss Picchio was said to be a popular and well adjusted teenager and has been described as ‘the prettiest girl in the whole town’.
News of her suicide sparked a wave of Twitter messages condemning the bullies.
‘Tomorrow I have to go back to school and see those idiots. I can’t do it,’ read one post.
It is not the first time that cyber-bullyinghas made headline new in Italy.
In 2010 three Google executives were handed six-month suspended sentences after film of a handicapped student being bullied was posted online. Google was accused of allowing the students privacy to be violated.
The sentence was overturned on appeal in December last year, although that decision is now being contested at Italy’s Supreme Court.-