Friday, November 8, 2013

Death By Twitter: Mascot Edition

You know the old adage about topics to avoid at parties: politics and religion.
I think we need a new such adage about topics not to joke about on Social Media. At the top of this list: suicide.
An unlikely Tweeter learned this lesson the hard way this week, and makes our latest "Death by Twitter".
Freddie the Falcon is the mascot for the NFL's Atlanta Falcons, a team that is currently not doing so hot on the field with a 2-6 record so far this year.
Well, Freddie decided to tie in his recent appearance at a American Foundation for Suicide Prevention walk with his team's recent dismal performance. After the walk, Freddie posted a message on Twitter that has since been deleted, reading:
"Had a good time at the #ood suicide prevention walk today. I may need to go back if our season continues the way it is."
I am always baffled at who approves these Tweets. Getting a slight laugh over a topic that is so emotionally packed, especially after just supporting people who care deeply about the prevention, is just irresponsible.
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention released the following statement, in what I think is a classy way to handle this situation:
For the more than 1,000 survivors of suicide loss who participated in today's walk, suicide prevention is no laughing matter. We hope everyone who joined us today, including Freddie, support our vision for a world without suicide.
Freddie realized the error in his ways and posted the following apology not much later. There is no word yet as to if the social media manager who allowed this still has a job or not. We've seen many lose their jobs due to tasteless tweets. Do you think this is a fireable offense? 

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