A BALLARAT father has accused Facebook of double standards after he was suspended for abusing fans of a page called “Dead Baby Jokes”.
Steve Murnane of Redan was made aware of the fan page last Monday, when a friend wrote on the page and it appeared on his timeline.
Mr Murnane said he “felt sick” when he viewed the page and wrote a post expressing his anger.
“I was absolutely disgusted and I was so angry in the moment that I posted something that was quite offensive,” he said.
“I know I shouldn’t have written what I did but, I was appalled by what I saw on there.”
Soon after posting his comment to a fan of the Facebook page, Mr Murnane was reported for abuse and found his Facebook account suspended for 24 hours.
Before being able to unlock the account, Mr Murnane was told to read and agree to the website’s terms and conditions.
Mr Murnane has accused the social networking giant of double standards.
“It’s fair enough that I was reported and banned for what I said,” Mr Murnane said.
“But why hasn’t the page been taken down?
“Thousands of people have reported this page for harassment and violence and still nothing has been done.
“It’s as if Facebook are choosing to promote this page by not taking any action.”
Within hours of getting back into his account, Mr Murnane decided to turn his anger into a proactive stance against the page and created his own Facebook page named “Ban the Page Dead Baby Jokes”.
There are up to 50 other similar pages criticising “Dead Baby Jokes”. Together they have more than 5000 likes.
The “Dead Baby Jokes” page was created in 2010 and has more than 35,000 followers. It also has the following disclaimer: “Dead Baby Jokes contains highly offensive humour and should not be viewed by individuals who are easily offended by tasteless humour. We here at Dead Baby Jokes take the safety of your children at heart, and do not in any way condone the killing of babies, or any other manner in which harm could come to a child.”
Mr Murnane said he and his friends had reported the page to Facebook and heard nothing back.
“I’m a parent of two children, and one on the way, and I don’t want to be seeing things like what is on there,” he said.
Mr Murnane’s two children, aged 10 and 12, used to be allowed half an hour of supervised time on the internet each night.
However, since the discovery of the “Dead Baby Jokes” page, Mr Murnane and his partner are scared of what their children might come across.
“It’s hard because we don’t want them to see the awful things that can be found on Facebook but, at the same time, we would like them to be trusted and have access to the internet in a safe and fun way,” he said.