How many Facebook likes is a child's life worth? Apparently, for one man, the answer is a quantifiable 1,000.
According to reports fromAl Arabiya and BBC, the Algerian man posted a photo of him dangling his baby cousin out of a window on the 15th floor. The caption read: "1,000 likes or I will drop him."
The photo, which reportedly has been taken down, sparked outrage worldwide. Many called for the unnamed man to be arrested and tried on child abuse charges.
"The picture was taken in a balcony with protective barriers. These were removed," the man said, denying he was putting the infant at risk and arguing the photo had been altered by social media users. The child's father also asked the court to forgive the man, saying his nephew was just playing a game.
But the judge wasn't having it, saying the picture was clear and the child's life was in danger. On Monday, an Algerian court sentenced him to two years in prison.
People have gone to extreme lengths to boost their social media presence, including setting themselves on fire and taking fatal selfies in front of charging bulls or with a gun pointed to their heads. But endangering someone else, especially a child who can't speak out, is on a whole other level.
It's one thing to photoshop your baby in dangerous situations to spread awareness of life-saving transplants, as one dad does. It's another when the circumstances are actually risky. Unfortunately, this isn't the first time a child was put in danger for publicity or as a joke. One of the most recent and viral examples was in May, when parents of disturbing YouTube pranks, which viewers have called emotionally and physically abusive, lost custody of their kids.