Posting Pictures of a Friend’s Baby to Reddit is Not Cool, Even if the Baby Looks Like Ted Cruz
People always say that nothing posted on the Internet is ever really private, and it’s true. Even if our Facebook and Instagram privacy settings are nailed down tight to just let our friends and family through, all that info is just one screen shot and a snarky friend away from the front page of Reddit.
About two hours ago a Reddit user posted a photo of a baby to Reddit’s wildly popular Mildly Interesting forumand opined that the baby, whose picture had just crossed his Facebook feed, “looks exactly like Ted Cruz.” That post became extremely popular and now, just two hours later, the Ted Cruz Baby is the first post on the front page of Reddit and has more than 961 comments and counting
“Ted Cruz Baby” is not an inappropriate picture for a person to post to social media. It’s just a cute, smiling, fully-dressed baby sitting in a car seat. (Yes, as any of us could have predicted, a large number of those 961 comments are from people saying he’s not buckled in correctly.) He doesn’t even really look that much like Ted Cruz, but this Reddit thread is disconcerting to see, because unlike Fist Pump Baby and many other popular meme babies, this kid’s picture wasn’t posted to Reddit by his parents. If what the original poster says is true, one of the parents posted the photo to their own page, and then one of their friends saw the picture, copied the photo, and put it on Reddit. The parents’ privacy settings are unknown. This could have been posted so anybody could see it, or it could have been posted just to a small list of friends and family. Either way, one of their friends just took their baby picture and now it’s on the front page of Reddit, and that’s pretty weird.
It’s true that nothing posted on the Internet is ever really private, and this is why. Even if a person locks down their own privacy settings, anybody they allow through could just copy and share as they see fit. We might think our friends wouldn’t do that, but it’s tough to be sure.
The weirdness of this situation did not go unnoticed by the other commenters.
“The lesson here is to never share your baby pictures amongst your Facebook friends unless you want him to be laughed at by thousands of strangers,” reads the top comment on the photo, which is from a person called Orc_of_sauron.
“This post has gained too much traction. It is front page bound. This poor child is now the Ted Cruz Baby Meme,” replied someone called NokiaSnakeWorldChamp.
The baby isn’t naked or doing anything embarrassing, and in a couple months he probably won’t look anything like he does in this picture. But still, if the parents find out about this, they’ll probably be pretty busy wondering which of their friends posted their baby’s photo to Reddit without their permission.
This is not to say that people shouldn’t share pictures of their kids on Facebook, just that parents doing so need to be aware that their “private” Facebook photos are just one snarky high school friend or former coworker away from being on the front page of Reddit.