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COVER

Can you rel8 to this?

Most of us are having fun carelessly reconnecting with old friends and loved ones on the nations phenomenon – Facebook.  We post pictures of our family members, outings and plates of dinner.  On Facebook, we form communities that band together – clicks if you will, answering each others threads and keeping life current.  We watch award shows together and chat the whole 2 hours, commenting on who sang what and why he or she is wearing THAT.  We aren’t overly cautious on Facebook.  It isn’t as creepy as MySpace seemed when it first sprung.  I mean…we actually protect our Facebook community from the infiltration of intruders, whose job it is to destroy the comradeship with viruses and hacks.  I mean come on…it’s a social network for crying out loud.  But seriously…we think nothing to post pictures of our excursions, enticing our “friends” to salivate over our latest exotic vacation.  But…sometimes, just sometimes, a parasite moves in and is able to change the course.  They cyphen the excitement out of us and cause us to worry.  They are spies.  People from your workplace that are sent to dissect your life and report back the details in order to decide whether or not you are guilty of IT.   THEY thought YOU were up to something?  If you think I’m making stuff up, check this out:

REPOST & OPINION:

BROMONT, Quebec – A Canadian woman on sick leave for depression said Monday she would fight an insurance company’s decision to cut her benefits after her agent found photos on Facebook of her vacationing, at a bar and at a party.

Nathalie Blanchard said Monday she was diagnosed with major depression and was receiving monthly sick-leave benefits until payments dried up this fall.

When Blanchard called her insurance provider, Manulife, to find out why, she says she was told the Facebook photos showed she was able to work.  “If you have insurance, be careful. This is a major battle and it’s not going to be easy,” Blanchard, 29, said in a telephone interview from her home in Bromont Quebec.

She said her insurance agent described several pictures Blanchard posted on Facebook, including ones showing her having a good time at a Chippendales bar show, at her birthday party and on a holiday.

Blanchard said Manulife told her it was evidence she is no longer depressed.

Her lawyer, Tom Lavin, said Blanchard was wrongfully dismissed from her benefits, and she had the right to go on a sunny vacation.

“The issue for me is that they stopped her disability benefits without the proper medical recommendations. Her doctor recommended she go on vacation,” he said.

Blanchard said she took three four-day trips when she was feeling especially low, on her psychiatrist’s advice.

Manulife declined to comment on the case specifically but has said in a statement that “we would not deny or terminate a valid claim solely based on information published on Websites such as Facebook.”

Still, Lavin said the issue raises concerns for anyone who expects their private life to remain so if they post personal information to social networking sites such as Facebook.

“It’s good warning for people who use Facebook. It’s not like being at home and writing in your diary. It’s out there for the whole world to see,” he said

Blanchard’s case will be before Quebec Superior Court Dec. 8.

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I remember in 1996, I was home recuperating from a car accident that I experienced in the late of 1995.  I totaled my vehicle while en-route to a home call.  I was in a lot of pain – lots.  Six months after the accident, the pain worsened because I hadn’t been getting the proper treatment.  See…the county of Los Angeles was too busy trying to figure out whether or not I was pretending than to concentrate on my therapeutic plan.  When I finally went to a back specialist, he showed me a degenerated disc and pulled me aside to read what was in my charts.  There is was plain as day, “We are confident that if Ingrid is followed and photographed, we will find that her injuries are less severe than she complains.” WOW!  My jaw dropped.  They REALLY thought I was lying.  They REALLY believed that I was trying to scam the county.  Well needless to say I was livid.  ‘How dare they,’ I thought.  ‘The nerve.’  But I later learned that “stress” is big business.  I wasn’t out on stress leave but I suppose the next in line were those who complained of on the job injuries – and this was that.

So…what’s my point?  Watch your back!  If you tell your boss you’re sick and had to be hospitalized, don’t be on the social networks – tweeting and wildly responding to chat threads on Facebook.  Make sure not to post pictures of you with dates and times if you are uncertain of the company that is among your friend database.  Many people pride themselves on having sooooooooo many friends Facebook – but do you reaaaaaaaaaaaally have 5000 friends.  I suggest you go in with the delete button and snuff out that heffa that might be there lying in wait to destroy your reputation.  I’m just saying.  I know you’re not trying to have it go down like ole girl in the article.  That IS NOT a good look.

Signing off.

Click here to learn more about Ingrid Michelle AND follow her on Twitter

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