Author Topic: Offensive Facebook post  (Read 3301 times)

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Princess Ida

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Offensive Facebook post
« on: May 15, 2014, 03:26:20 AM »
A Facebook friend posted something extremely offensive today regarding the California wildfires. This is somebody who has a tendency to post fairly controversial opinions, but also posts some insightful things. This is not the first time she has posted something offensive, but this post is possibly hitting closer to home for me because I have friends and relatives who are affected by the fires. In addition, when people have challenged her on other controversial opinions (in the spirit of friendly debate), her responses have been borderline hostile. In general, I do not see people attempting friendly debate with her on Facebook anymore.
Is there a polite way to let her know that I find her post extremely offensive? There are religious aspects to the post, and I am from a similar religious persuasion, but believe she is applying principles inaccurately in this case. Any way of responding will have to communicate that. I realize I could simply defriend her, but that would be noticed and be likely to offend a number of people.

Cali.in.UK

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2014, 06:12:00 AM »
I used to post funny quotes that I had overheard by my students on my page and one day I got a private message from an old acquaintance. He sent me a message and in a non-accusation type way that said that my post have offended him and he explained why. I think I would have been pretty upset if he had wrote that publicly on my wall, but the private message made me take his comments seriously.
You could send her a private message and explain that you know she doesn't have bad intentions but that what she wrote was hurtful to you for x, y, z reasons.

Perfect Circle

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2014, 06:27:38 AM »
You can also just hide her feed.

You can send her a PM to say you are offended by her post but I wouldn't expect it to make any difference to her posting style.
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Psychopoesie

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2014, 06:40:07 AM »
Private message is usually my preference. No guarantees you'll get a reasonable response that way either.

I don't usually comment on someone's political views. I very occasionally post stuff (like pics from a rally I attended) that some friends won't agree with. Sometimes I'll see similar things from them in my newsfeed and hide it if it gets irritating. So far, my friends have had the same policy for the most part.

Although I would usually prefer to PM, and then only in extreme cases,  I did recently write something brief in a friend's comments field. The friend had posted something from another site that was a hoax about a politically divisive issue - essentially purporting to be evidence that people from X group get more government assistance than people from Y group who were seen as more deserving (not exactly that but you get the picture).  I suppose I posted publicly because I didn't want everyone else who saw it accepting the "evidence" as correct.

Anyway, FB friend quietly deleted the post and hasn't said anything to me about it.

Even though my FB didn't explode, that's more a how not to story. Next time, I plan to take a few more deep breaths and step away from the computer for a bit when something presses a big shiny red button.







Two Ravens

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2014, 06:44:02 AM »
If she regularly post offensive things, I think a PM would have zero chance of changing her mind, or even making her think twice.

If it's the kind of post I am thinking of, I would just defriend and to heck with those who are offended. In my opinion, life is too short to cater to people who gloat over other peoples' suffering.

Psychopoesie

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2014, 06:51:55 AM »
If she regularly post offensive things, I think a PM would have zero chance of changing her mind, or even making her think twice.

If it's the kind of post I am thinking of, I would just defriend and to heck with those who are offended. In my opinion, life is too short to cater to people who gloat over other peoples' suffering.

I was wondering about that too - there's usually some unpleasant stuff floating around after any disaster. The sort of thing I was thinking of blames the victims for bringing the disaster down upon themselves in some way. Admit I'd defriend if it crossed that line, too.

menley

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2014, 07:01:45 AM »
I once posted something on my Facebook that my sister disapproved of, and she gave me a huge public lecture in the comments. I deleted it but it had already been on my page for several hours before I'd seen it and several friends asked me about it for weeks afterwards. It was embarrassing and I later told her that I wished that she had sent me a private message or talked to me in person.

Now, in that instance what I had said wasn't intentionally offensive or controversial - she took it the wrong way. So with this friend in the OP who is regularly controversial, you may want to consider more permanent solutions such as unfriending or hiding her comments. But I would send her a private message rather than posting anything publicly, or talk to her in person.

I also don't think unfriending is as publicly noticeable as you think - I have no idea who my Facebook friends are unfriending.

Venus193

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2014, 07:30:27 AM »
Hide her feed.  I did this with a friend who constantly posts political stuff that while I may not disagree with it I don't want it appearing on my page.

Twik

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2014, 07:34:33 AM »
I'd defriend. I bet far fewer people are offended by that then you think.

(Edited because Spellcheck does not read for context.)
« Last Edit: May 15, 2014, 09:47:00 AM by Twik »
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Oh Joy

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2014, 08:11:19 AM »
I'm one of those people whose opinion is that Facebook is best used only to share positive things, so I don't think that kind of post is appropriate.  But not my site, not my rules.

That said, if she believes and publicly declares something that you find so out of sync with your own personal values, the true question is about your level of association with her, not about her public statements, KWIM?

Best wishes.

CaffeineKatie

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #10 on: May 15, 2014, 06:47:12 PM »
I have some FB friends I share interests with, but they also have political/current event/religious viewpoints that differ from mine; sometimes they post things that make my blood boil.  I just blocked their feeds; I look at their pages every few days for posts about our common interests, and don't have to deal with their other postings on my page.  Easey peasey.

EllenS

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #11 on: May 15, 2014, 07:22:53 PM »
I used to post funny quotes that I had overheard by my students on my page and one day I got a private message from an old acquaintance. He sent me a message and in a non-accusation type way that said that my post have offended him and he explained why. I think I would have been pretty upset if he had wrote that publicly on my wall, but the private message made me take his comments seriously.
You could send her a private message and explain that you know she doesn't have bad intentions but that what she wrote was hurtful to you for x, y, z reasons.

I vote for this. This is giving your friend a chance to reflect and improve.
If it doesn't make a difference you can always hide the feed. It just depends on the relationship. With people I don't care much about and only know casually, I'd just hide the feed. With people I feel close to, I'd do the Cali PM.

Mergatroyd

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2014, 07:25:11 PM »
You could hide and report her post, if you think it would make you feel better. Otherwise I believe a pm would be the way to go, maybe with a few quotes from your shared religion that will make her realise she was out of line.

Promise

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #13 on: May 15, 2014, 07:29:22 PM »
You seem to have a desire to respond. People post all kinds of things and we don't know the tone/voice in which they are posting. Something we find offensive in writing might not sound that way in the context of conversation. Here's the thing I'd suggest, ignore it and don't engage.

I used to be one of those people who engaged people with posts I disagreed with. I've learned that it's not worth it. It stirs up anger in people and you never change anyone's view. It's seems extreme and judgmental to tell them that their post "offended" you (unless it was specifically about you!) or to unfriend someone because of their views, especially if they are a real life friend. If it gets that bad, hide them. That way they can still post directly to your wall. You just won't be subjected to their regular wall posts.

purple

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Re: Offensive Facebook post
« Reply #14 on: May 16, 2014, 01:19:24 AM »
You don't need to block or hide or unfriend if you think that a) you might miss some of the nice stuff she posts that you enjoy reading or b) "people" might be offended (although I struggle to understand your reasoning there).  In any case, just ignore it.  You don't need to respond to every single thing every single person ever posts on FB.