ludwig and borden

I’ve been following this story with some interest. Not quite so much the sensationalistic aspects of it, though there are plenty, but the intersection of this case with the ‘net.

First of all, you have the relatively predictable side of the public response (friends/acquaintances AND strangers alike): Pennsylvania teens’ weblogs reveal Christian faith which also includes a cursory examination of the teenagers’ weblogs. This is much like other stuff we’ve seen online.

But here’s what’s really interesting me…if you dig deeper in their online stuff, some things start to emerge: here and here.

Now as far as the details themselves, they are a sordid background to all this, and I’ll be interested to see what’s determined later. But what interests me right now is that this stuff is online to begin with.

Hell, I keep this anonymous and I’m not plotting to kill anyone or manipulate people or whatever. And on items of a more personal nature I restrict them to friend viewing. I don’t want some weirdo tracking me down. So why did both of them post email and chat transcripts to online blogs? Even if they were secondary blogs, why not private or friend the entries to keep them personal? (I checked both, they provide public, friend, private modes for entries.) So I don’t get it.

It just kind of interests me. Maybe most teenagers private or friend their more personal entries and we just see the big stuff, I don’t know. Or maybe most of them don’t think about it, or think that having a different space is enough concealment. Nevertheless, it looks like both of them took the time to post transcripts of conversations with other people that could have gotten them in trouble (of a more standard variety) — Ludwig appears to have been dealing with the hawaiian girlfriend at the same time he was with Borden, and Borden posted a chat transcript that sounds for all the world that she might be pregnant (“we are taking care of it…”, “we took that risk the first night he came over”) or some such as a result of the relationship.

So it puzzles and interests me, the sorts of stuff people put online about themselves. I suppose in some ways it’s an extension of stuff people have done through the ages, only before it was written letters and such, now it’s online.

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