A Murder Posted on Facebook Prompts Outrage and Questions Over Responsibility – The New York Times
SAN FRANCISCO — On Easter, Steve Stephens drove around downtown Cleveland on what he said was a mission to commit murder — and soon he had an audience of millions for his shooting of Robert Godwin Sr., 74, which he recorded and posted on Facebook, the police in Cleveland said.On Monday, the authorities nationwide were looking for Mr. Stephens, 37, with the police as far away as Philadelphia saying they had received calls about sightings of him in that area.Now Facebook is facing a backlash over the shooting video, as it grapples with its role in policing content on its global platform.It is an issue that Facebook, the world’s largest social network, has had to contend with more frequently as it has bet big on new forms of media like live video, which give it a venue for more lucrative advertising. The criticism of Facebook over Mr. Stephens’s video built swiftly Monday, with critics calling it a dark time for the company and outrage spreading on social media over how long it had taken — more than two hours — for the video to be pulled down. Ryan A. Godwin, the victim’s grandson, pleaded with other users on social media to stop sharing the video online.
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