As fantastic as social media is, it can also be dangerous. As of recent, a number of men and women have been killed, raped, tortured, or some terrible combination of the three while live-streaming. The more eyes a person has, the more validated they feel. In fact, this has been the subject of numerous television episodes, academic researches, and more. The endorphin rush that we get from a simple like on Instagram is dangerous to our ego. When will we learn to manage this addiction?
For MonaLisa Perez and Pedro Ruiz, their lives came to a screaming halt when they attempted a "crazy" stunt all to gain more YouTube followers. Known on the popular video site as stunt vloggers, the Minnesota couple wanted to make increasingly risky videos. As seen on all social media sties, the crazier the stunt, the more followers.
While near their home, the couple was outside with their three year old daughter. Ruiz held a thick book to his chest, and Perez held a gun to the book. She pulled the trigger, and the bullet went through the book and Ruiz's chest, killing him almost instantly. The seven-month pregnant Perez was shocked by what transpired, claiming that they had practiced the stunt successfully off camera a few times.
The love her life was shot in front of their three year old child, leaving Perez alone and charged with manslaughter and reckless behavior. She admitted to shooting him when she video conferenced in to her most recent court hearing, but she says that it was all for their vlog. They just wanted more followers.
This story should be a lesson for us all. We might crave followers and the attention that they give us, but, in the end, it is not worth risking your life and your sanity to gain more followers. It just is not worth it. Perez will likely spend a significant amount of time in jail, and her two children will grow up without their mother (and father). All of this is because she and her partner wanted more followers.
Stunts such as these should not be glorified. If they had not been, Pedro Ruiz might still be alive.