|
|
Crookston Times - Crookston, MN
  • Editorial: Must everything have a social media angle to it?

  • It’s one of those headlines that kind of jumps off the page, and even if you intended to read other stories in the print newspaper or website of whatever news outlet you’re surfing, you almost can’t help but stray from your plans for a moment to read what in the world actually happened:
    • email print
      Comment
  •     It’s one of those headlines that kind of jumps off the page, and even if you intended to read other stories in the print newspaper or website of whatever news outlet you’re surfing, you almost can’t help but stray from your plans for a moment to read what in the world actually happened:   
        “Man cited after tossing $1,000 in dollar bills into Mall of America rotunda” is what the headline read Saturday on the Minneapolis Star Tribune website. You almost can’t help but wonder, “What? How is that possible?”    
        It would seem that the guy is just giving away money, after all, that he’s just being spontaneously generous in a season when spontaneous acts of generosity typically spike. It’s the holiday season, the season of giving, and we’re in the midst of it.   
        So why, then, did Serge Vorobyov, of Apple Valley, get cited for tossing a thousand bucks into the rotunda at the massive Bloomington mall? Mall security say it’s because his actions could have caused a serious situation, a contention that probably makes some sense. After all, nothing makes people turn into ravenous, take-no-prisoners creatures faster than the possibility to get something for free, and if someone is tossing piles of cash from up high into a rotunda below in a gigantic mall, things could get ugly in a hurry.   
        So, fine, leave it at that, right? Wrong. There’s more. Basically, Bloomington Police say, Vorobyov’s act, which he carried out while a trio of singers sang, “Let it Snow,” was little more than a publicity stunt. They say he stamped his YouTube web address on each dollar bill in the hope that people would visit and watch his video. If it went “viral,” there was a better chance his ex-wife would see it and, he hoped, take him back because he was being so generous. He also hoped his generosity would somehow spur his wife to give him his cat back, and that his good deed would somehow help him professionally, since his car-hauling business had gone under.   
        So if you visited his YouTube page, you saw Vorobyov explaining that he wanted to give away his “last” $1,000 just to spread holiday cheer. He also acknowledges in the video that he was cited for disorderly conduct. On his Facebook page, he was even kind enough to post a photo of his actual ticket.   
        Suddenly, it’s not all innocent fun. It’s not genuine generosity. Even if he just wanted to get his wife back, one could heap maybe a little bit of praise on Vorobyov. But he brought YouTube into it, and Facebook, in the actual hope he might land a job, apparently, in addition to getting his wife and cat back.     
    Page 2 of 2 -     Can’t anyone do anything anymore without involving social media? If he had decided to put the $1,000 in a Salvation Army kettle, would Vorobyov have captured the moment on his smart phone and posted that online as well? Or would he have tweeted about it via Twitter, as Mitt Romney’s son recently did while helping a family at the scene of a car accident?   
        Sadly, the answer is probably yes. The money would have certainly benefited the Salvation Army and the people it helps, but at the expense of our society in general.   
        The world doesn’t need to know everything you do.

        calendar