The EFM Feature

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Hey guys — I wrote an article I thought you might like to see in GOOD magazine. No, it’s not related to Gov. Romney or politics at all, but check it out and leave me a comment there!

“Claire killed Steven yesterday,” said the pastor at the 200-year-old church.
The oldest operational church in the state of Tennessee has weathered many tragedies, including the Civil War, with its elegant stained-glass windows intact. But this was the only time a congregant had killed another. Less than 24 hours had passed since a woman repeatedly shot her husband in the chest, apparently during target practice.
Was it purposeful? I discreetly texted my friends who were sitting a few rows back. “We don’t know details,” the pastor continued. “But I admonish you not to gossip,” he said, after I pressed send. “Or to make it worse by spreading rumors.”
Through sheer force of will I got home without gossiping, but I couldn’t resist getting online. Our local newspaper’s website shed frustratingly little information. The second hit from my internet search, however, was his Facebook page.
Feeling like I’d stumbled on an open diary left on the table, I hesitantly clicked and gulped when I saw him standing next to a tank in Iraq, alive and vibrant. On his wall were dozens of recent notes from friends, like “My kids want a playdate with yours. When the snow melts?” Steven’s “recent activities” listed the people he’d “friended.”
No space existed between these entries and the next—not even an asterisk explaining what transpired—but it was obvious that a normal life had suddenly changed to something quite alarming: “Was it really Steven? How is he? Can someone please confirm?”

Facebook recently changed its policy regarding death. My article explains this, and explores the weird ramifications of living — and dying — online. Read the rest here.


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