The Hidden Danger of Adding the French Flag Filter to your Facebook Profile Picture

Captura de pantalla 2015-11-14 a les 18.58.49

After Friday’s attacks in Paris, Facebook has launched an optional filter for all users. This Facebook filter calls for solidarity with last Friday’s attacks by giving the option to customize profile pictures superimposing the French Tricoloure on them. Of course, more and more Facebook users are using this tool, shocked by terror in the French capital. First-class and second-class, inclusive third and fourth class casualties exist, it’s self-evident although not desirable. To a certain extent, it’s understandable than an European citizen feels more upset for an attack in Paris than in Beirut. In fact, after analyzing the media coverage of both attacks, it would be odd if a person from, for example, Spain was more moved about a terrorist attack in Lebanon than in France

It’s evident that the biggest mass media are manipulating collective consciousness. The silence that reigns or the coldness while exposing the death tolls from attacks in the so-called Arab World, contrasts with the dramatism when informing the number of killed and wounded after an attack in Europe or the U.S. territory. This communication strategy is a model of success for creating first and second-class citizens and societies. More and more Europeans realize that they are being manipulated and try to ignore the influence of the mass media that end up building insurmountable walls between societies through action and inaction. However, this is a new strategy for social communication; the Facebook filter represents a danger that finds most users with lowered defenses.

Using this Facebook filter as a gesture with Paris attacks victims is supporting a view of the world where only occidental casualties matter and building another border wall surrounding this 21st Century European Fortress, inhabited by terrified vassals that give away their critical awareness to private companies and public institutions in exchange for a little calmness. When a bomb explodes or a missile falls in Lebanon, Irak, Iran or anywhere in the world, siblings suffer and parents lose their heart when knowing that their relatives are dead; friends desperately look for clues that may lead to their colleagues. It’s understandable (although not desirable) that an European citizen feels more upset after an attack in Paris than in Beirut. Most of us have friends in Paris or have visited this city on several occasions. But Facebook is a global company and with these kind gestures, the only success comes from establishing an imposed hegemonic point of view under which occidental casualties are important and a reason to get mobilized while, for example, the casualties after Thursday’s attacks in Beirut, don’t really count at all. We didn’t have the option to customize our Facebook profile pictures superimposing the flag of Lebanon, did we? From my point of view, accepting and supporting this attitude is extremely dangerous, even more if we support it without noticing at all.

Èric Lluent, journalist (Barcelona, 1986)

Translated by Ainhoa Rebolledo (Read it here in Spanish)

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36 respostes a The Hidden Danger of Adding the French Flag Filter to your Facebook Profile Picture

  1. Retroenllaç: El peligro de ponerse la foto de perfil con el filtro de la bandera francesa | My Way, el blog d'Èric Lluent

  2. Helena Alvez ha dit:

    Por favor, en castellano como leí en Facebook!Gracias!  

    Helena

             

    WordPress.com | Èric Lluent posted: “After Friday’s attacks in Paris, Facebook has launched an optional filter for all users. This Facebook filter calls for solidarity with last Friday’s attacks by giving the option to customize profile pictures superimposing the French Tricoloure on them.” | |

  3. LadyButterfly ha dit:

    Reblogged this on I'm a Lady Butterfly and commented:
    ………..
    De l’importance d’avoir le choix. Parce que Beyrouth a connu l’un des pires attentats….Pourquoi sur FB ne pouvons-nous pas mettre notre profil aux couleurs du Liban? Je ne le mettrais donc pas en bleu/blanc/rouge. Toute vie est précieuse d’où qu’elle soit.

  4. Retroenllaç: Let's Pretend we were Drunk

  5. Paulina Hdez ha dit:

    Bravo, honestamente veo escritos todos mis pensamientos ante esta nueva “moda” en Fb. Soy mexicana y en los últimos momentos me he visto rodeada de la bandera Francesa en mi cuenta, me enoja, me indigna y me entristece que todo esto sea un acto de ignorancia, hace unos minutos publiqué en mi cuenta un mensaje para los que habían puesto la bandera, fui criticada y finalmente apoyada por una persona que me envió al blog, me sentía como una loca y que todos ellos eran los cuerdos, no entiendo cómo siendo yo mexicana y por ende la mayoría de mis contactos, apoyen más a Francia que a su propio país, qué pasa sobre los estudiantes? Sobre la guardería ABC? Y muchas cosas más, pero en fin, como dije “Ser un ignorante en pleno s. XXI es por convicción.”

  6. Sophie ha dit:

    Please check your English grammar before to write this…whether to take advantage of people’s willingness to enter inconsistent for obvious approaches. Thanks

  7. Joe Ndluli ha dit:

    People have the right to grieve in the way they choose. If it’s showing support to the French by using a national icon (flag/Eifel Tower image etc), then so be it. Who has the right to censor people not to do so? The public, mass outpouring of grief by ‘occidentals’ is clear and understandable, their culture is under attack. Nothing prevents Arabs from a public, mass outpouring of grief for the Lebanon bombing. Nothing prevents Asians from a public, mass outpouring of grief for victims of natural disasters such as recently in the Phillipines.
    No one has the right to censor the way people choose to express themselves in time of grief or happiness. That would be facist.

    • Èric Lluent ha dit:

      Facebook is a global company, not just Western company. I’m not censoring anybody. I’m just saying Facebook does not care for other terrorism victims by not letting people show support with the same tool as now everybody is using.

    • Albeiro Rodas ha dit:

      Evidently it’s not an option, Joe. It’s nothing more than Media manipulation and FB knows how to do it and well. The position of the author is very real and humanistic: it is about all peoples, it’s not about a particular culture or portion of the Earth.

  8. Curt Larimore ha dit:

    I respect and even appreciate the point of view offered by the author of this article but I feel that he is taking the easy target in his efforts… instead perhaps the harder target would be the terrorists and those who support their actions. then again… as I stated I appreciate his pov and if he were so otherwise inclined I might miss out.

    I will be keeping my filter up for a few days regardless. (and I have already acknowledged the Beruit bombings on my page.)

  9. Laurette Cocoual ha dit:

    Encore une belle démonstration de piètre analyse journalistique. Moi, ce que je trouve dangereux, c’est de donner une carte de presse à une personne qui tient de tels propos et en tire des conclusions hasardeuses, bourrées de clichés et raccourcis. Utiliser le filtre Facebook actuel fait donc de nous de gros égoïstes qui ne s’inquiètent pas de se qui se passe ailleurs dans le monde…. alors sache que l’un n’empêche pas l’autre : je suis toujours touchée, voir choquée par la violence gratuite peu importe où elle frappe. Et contrairement aux certitudes de cet imbécile, le symbole permet de montrer qu’on est tous solidaires et que l’on rejette TOUTES ces ignominies.

  10. Kieran ha dit:

    que peligro de verdad!!
    Igual de peligroso como tener la bandera palestina como foto de perfil si uno no es palestino, verdad? asi vas asumiendo que en palestina la cantidad de muertes es estadisticamente superior a los conflictos en sudan (2 millones de muertes por ejemplo), congo, nigeria, afghanistan, etc…
    que peligro la solidaridad con un vecino mas proximo geograficamente y culturalmente.
    tu articulo es eurocentrico y basura. lo llamamos “white guilt”.
    ni dijiste “lo siento tus perdidas, francia” antes de embarcar en predicar el “peligro” de una bandera en facebook. menudo “peligro” comparado con los hechos en syria o afghanista o lebanon.
    no hubieras escrito el articulo si la opcion de ponerse ninguna bandera que no venga de oeste de europa se hubiera presentado.
    a ver que opina Taha que es un afghano, hazara (minoria cazada por los pashtu talibanes) , quien desfortunadamente ha puesto su perfil como bandera francesa. quizas le puedes explicar el “peligro”, el pobre no conoce el peligro viniendo de afghanistan. Seguro que le haras ayudado mucho.

    • Roser ha dit:

      ¿Has ayudado tu a alguien de todos los países que están en guerra? porque este artículo está referido a los medios de comunicación, no al sentimiento de las muertes, al cuál te invito a escribir un artículo acerca de ello si te apetece.

  11. cubilone7 ha dit:

    Hello Eric, I translated your original article from Spanish into Greek here: http://cubimension.net/blog/?p=5623 I’m posting this comment here so that it doesn’t get lost in the sea of comments in the other articles. Merci

  12. Shelby ha dit:

    How hypocritical. Your article revolves around the idea of not favoring countries when supporting the victims of an ISIS attack, yet you neglect to mention Baghdad. I believe that the victims of that attack are just as important as those affected by the attacks in Paris and Beirut. Perhaps we should be given the option to change our profile pic to that of Iraq’s flag as well.

  13. Johann ha dit:

    Thank you for the article and translation! I agree with the points you mention, especially the Lebanon part.
    Furthermore, these days I ask myself if we really need a facebook filter (or facebook eg) to express our solidarity and sorrow. Is it a gesture of support or what is the meaning. Does it help us cope with the actual cruel moments? Wouldn’t it be a relief to get involved in real actions instead, like a memorial walk or a chat with family, friends or a stranger?

  14. Victor Perez ha dit:

    I agree mass/social media must not turn into a platform to attack all Muslims based on what those animals did. I have Muslim friends. But you tell that tho those who heard a bullet whistle while having a coffee. To those who took a bullet or two and those who had a person die in their arms. No religion or race or nationality bullshit here. The people that commits to mass murder like that must be judged immediately. When freedom, equality and fraternity are used to what those descendants of emigrants France once accepted did; it makes anyone anywhere think and pick sides. The filter is indeed a declaration of a position. Do you really believe you can “advise” people in social media? Paris events where planned coldly and with the usage of intellect and resources whiting and outside France. No mental illness involved, just ideology. That ideology is to be judged immediately. The hippie movement ended decades ago… that goes to you also France. It is not 1793 anymore.

  15. Lewis ha dit:

    Check the grammar before you post. This is the same opinion the people have after one death is more publicized than another, even in a small town. It helped spread awareness. That’s important too

    • Roser ha dit:

      Excuse me? what did you do not understand? cause the article is only saying how terrible is the way they could control our thoughts by using filters. Yes especially when they have attacked Europe.

  16. Roser ha dit:

    Feeling sad watching the fact of the ” first world” is coming here with stupid critics when they should feel so guilty for bombing Siria. A very few people shown up saying the truth. I hope Spain don’t fall in the European rules, if it didn’t yet…because i would feel really ashamed. Any North American have anything to say? Any British? Anyone?

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