Why I’m Not Overlaying My Facebook Profile Photo With The French Flag

For a moment my thumbs persisted in mid breath while my cursor hovered over a button that, if sounded, would contribute a colored filter to my Facebook profile picture. Earlier that day, I had been moved by the colours of blue, grey, and cherry-red littering my Facebook newsfeed, but as I examined the photo of myselfveiled in the colours of Francesomething stopped me from going through with it.

Following a flicker of curiosity, I scoured to see if there was a similar overlay of the Lebanese signal. But, other than a few scattered tie-ups redirecting users to custom overlay websites, I found nothing. Slamming my computer off, I stared blankly onward; dazed, but somehow not surprised.

As many of us once know, a series of onrushes in Paris on Friday left over 120 beings dead and several hundred wounded. The attacks catalyzed an immediate feeling reaction from people around the worldincluding myself. In addition to the millions of Facebook users who have adopted the French pennant overlay, innumerable luminaries and politicians have inundated Twitter and other social media sites with paroles of support for the person or persons of France.

Days afterward, the world is still in mourning.

On Thursdayless than 24 hours before the Paris attacksthe city of Beirut was shaken by a similar tragedy, an phenomenon that many of us wholly missed. The attacks in Beirut claimed the well-being of 43 parties, and left hundreds more disabled. However, media coverage of these events has been scarce.

Compared to the frenetic coverage of France, the misfortune in Beirut has failed to incite the same feelings of rage and compassion, and has was widely dismissed on Western social media. This was represented glaringly obvious on Facebook, where Lebanons flag is missing from the choice of accessible overlays.

Most Westerners empathize more naturally with the fight of other Western societies, and to detect empathy for France is not a bad thing. Yet, the opposing reactions to these two, very similar affects should be cause for anxiety or, at the very least, some reflective thought.

Though Facebook overlays may seem a inconsequential topic, they are based on extended analytics and represent current realities that Western civilization regularly rejects the struggles experienced in certain parts of the world. And although we may not certainly involve a Facebook overlay for every atrocity occurring internationally, we ought to take a closer look at which misfortunes have the power to send our civilizations into an empathetic frenzy, and which simply get overlooked.

Despite being surrounded by the shades of French patriotism, I decided to leave my profile paint untouched. Ogling forward, I hope social media users will pay closer attention when tragedies occur in countries that oppose from their own. We are all capable of widening its scope of application of our pity if “were starting” taking a more critical look at which stories make it onto our news feeds, which overlays make it onto our sketch pictures, and never stop expecting ourselves why.

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