Wednesday 27 August 2014
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Should Have Used Sgrouples: Manti Te'o Hoax Edition

By now, most people have probably heard the story: superstar linebacker loses his grandmother and his girlfriend in a span of 24 hours and continues to play in their honor, becoming one of America’s sports media darlings…only to have it revealed that America (and possibly Te’o) had been duped by a fake internet profile. Thus enters Diane O’Meara.

Center of the Hoax, Manti

Center of the Hoax, Manti Te’o

There is a lot being said these days about Te’o’s involvement in the scandal, but Sgrouples would like to bring attention to the person who was involved without knowing it. According to this recent article, O’Meara believed she was using adequate privacy settings on her Facebook page, however her seemingly personal pictures were used to conjure up Te’o’s fake girlfriend, Lennay Kekua. O’Meara was thrust into the spotlight soon after popular site Deadspin exposed the hoax.

O’Meara has come forward, saying:

I thought I was aware of the dangers and had done everything I could to protect myself. I now understand that the large corporations that control social media will never provide adequate protection by themselves. Users must take extraordinary steps to protect themselves.

Identity Stolen: Diane O'Meara

Identity Stolen: Diane O’Meara

She didn’t know Te’o or the man who stole her photo, but through a lack of online security, she’s now a public figure. And not in the best light…

If O’Meara had used Sgrouples to connect safely with people that she knew and trusted, none of this would have ever been a problem for her. Sgrouples offers private groups where you can share comfortably and confidently with the people from your real life. Her photos would have only been available to those she knew wouldn’t use them against her.

Not to mention the fact that Sgrouples has an easy-to-follow Privacy Bill of Rights and privacy is built into the platform, so O’Meara wouldn’t have thought blindly that she was protected when she, in fact, was not.

I suppose this is just another episode in the saga of “Should Have used Sgrouples!”

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