The father of Jesse Berlin has shared the “look back” video he pleaded with Facebook to show him. John Berlin, from St. Louis, Missouri, decided it was only right to share the video, after so many people helped to make his plea go viral in the hopes of getting the social media site to listen.
Berlin died in his sleep, in 2012. His social media page still exists, but the family has not been able to access it. When 46-year-old Berlin saw the “look back” videos from his son’s friends and other family members, some of which included photos of the deceased, he became emotional and wanted to see his son’s own video. Without access to the Facebook profile, that was impossible.
Berlin tried emailing the social networking website, but nothing happened. In a last effort, he created a video stating on it that he hoped it would go viral to make Mark Zuckerberg, and other members of the social networking giant’s team, understand just how much this meant to him. He didn’t want access to the page, just the video showing a collection of photos from his 21-year-old’s time on the networking site.
Within 24 hours, the video went viral on Facebook and YouTube and a representative of the social media site contacted Berlin with the news he had hoped for; a “look back” video would be created and shared with him. He could then do whatever he wanted with the video. Berlin decided it was right to share the Facebook “look back” video with those who had made it possible. The video has since had over 300,000 views on YouTube and continues to rise.
The “look back” videos are created through automated software and are the first of their kind for the social networking website. To celebrate the end of a year, the site has put pages together as a review of the most popular pictures and statuses shared. The videos were a way for all users to celebrate the website’s 10th anniversary. There have been complaints from some users, because the videos share embarrassing posts and photos, but overall they have been accepted happily.
The videos will disappear at the end of the month, unless they have been shared on timelines. It meant that Berlin was in a race against time to get Facebook officials to share the photos. The problem is that it is now raising questions about how many others will get to see deceased loved ones’ videos. According to the social networking site, the policy is to disable the pages of those who have died, but it may look at changing this policy after recent events.
A spokesman stated the site acknowledges there is more it can do to help celebrate and commemorate lives. Those in charge are now discussing their options and will be able to share more, in the weeks and months to come.
The 21-year-old from Missouri died of natural causes in his sleep, but his father explained that the autopsy came back undetermined. All the family wanted was a piece of their son’s life on Facebook and now Berlin has been able to share his son’s “look back” video with the world.
By Alexandria Ingham