The ‘Fake’ City of DeKalb Facebook Page

Your tax dollars are hard at work, threatening people.

Last night during the council meeting, city attorney Dean Frieders not once but twice discussed a “fake” City of DeKalb page on Facebook. The first time he described it as “libelous” and the second, egged on by Ald. Naylor, he pondered whether anything about it was “actionable.”

I found the page before meeting’s end and, to my amusement, it had 40 more “likes” than the official City of DeKalb page. I myself “liked” it immediately. Since then it’s been taken down, though. I don’t know if the page owner did it or if a city employee finally figured out s/he could just complain to Facebook like normal people do.

Whether or not it’s gone for good the page was clearly marked as a personal journal, the page description was unflattering to the city, and the latest post noted the purchase of the $80 dog dish I mentioned here yesterday. There’s no way anyone could rightfully accuse the author of impersonating the official page.

As a local blog owner for nearly eight years, I’ve occasionally wondered how much time the city’s legal beagles spend fantasizing about crushing those who exercise their First Amendment rights to criticize them. If the Facebook discussion is any indicator, the answer is “a lot.”

It’s not surprising. This is one of the ways people distract themselves when they have no clue how to address real problems such as the looming financial reckoning.