As of right now (Eastern Standard Time), I do not give the school permission to give me a B.  Oh, and since I declared it in writing, it’s totally true.  Unfortunately, this is not how the world works.  And even more unfortunately for Facebook users, you were all part of a stupid rumor.

Recently, numerous teenage Facebook users posted a status saying that, by posting this status, Facebook has no right to use or distribute the information within that profile.  Clearly, people don’t actually read this message before they post it because, if they did, they’d probably understand why it’s stupid all the way through.

The posts begin by stating the date and time the user posted this status—a strong alibi.  But if you look above literally any post made by anyone, you’d be shocked to discover that Facebook automatically timestamps posts for you.  Good try, but strike one.

The post claims that “Facebook has just released the entry price of £5.99 to keep the subscription of your status to be set to ‘Private.’”  Then, it conveniently notes that if you post the entire message on your page, you won’t have to pay a dime to stay “private.”  What a deal!  Maybe this will counteract my seven years of bad luck for not forwarding that email from the prince of Nigeria ten times within ten minutes.

Even if all of these subtle clues didn’t tip you off that the post was a hoax, you could have tried setting your account to “private.”  If you were really so concerned about your privacy on Facebook, then you probably would have checked your settings upon all the chaos. Subsequently, you would have discovered that Facebook hasn’t made any of these changes, unless, of course, you simply assumed it was true.  To whom would they have sent the bill anyway?  My email address?

But the scariest lesson learned from this hoax is that many people will believe anything on the Internet.  Had they read the full message or questioned parts of it, they would have known how ridiculous the overall claim was. Furthermore, their apathy towards these supposed threats to personal privacy only ticked them off enough to copy and paste someone else’s post.

In essence, be a careful reader and don’t believe everything you hear.  Having an opinion is essential for growth of character, but do your research before you impulsively blame Facebook for violating your rights.

The stereotypes about millennials come to fruition here, and if our future behavior matches our lazy, nihilistic attitude towards everything besides selfies and twerking, then this country will quickly crumble.

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