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Pregnancy announcements cause stir on Facebook

Photo of Caroline May
Caroline May
Political Reporter

Without fanfare last week, Facebook rolled out the newest addition to its networking site: the ability for expectant parents to list their “pregnancy status.”

The new Facebook feature allows users to input future additions to their family using an “Expected: Child” option.

While some may expect 14-year-old pranksters with Facebook “Married” statuses to have a field day, some have serious concerns.

Blogging at the women’s site “The Mary Sue,” Jamie Frevele noted the tragic possibilities of miscarrying a child whose coming delivery you have broadcast to the world.

“The risk of a situation involving possibly hundreds of ‘friends’ knowing details that turned out to be too tragic or personal to share is very great,” Frevele wrote. “Having a child is a very exciting thing to happen, but when there’s someone’s health at stake, it’s probably better to be extremely cautious and/or patient before making such an announcement on Facebook.”

Others including the pro-life group Concerned Women for America cheered the new option, adding a dig at pro-abortion advocates.

“Facebook should be commended for allowing its users to add an unborn child to their family and friends section, acknowledging the human person that, although not yet born, is already a member of a family,” Penny Nance, President and CEO of Concerned Women for America, told TheDC.

“No doubt,” she added, “supposed ‘women’s groups’ like Planned Parenthood will get their panties in a twist against Facebook users who dare to say their unborn child is a person.”

While the public is split, Facebook notes that it is always working to innovate and this is just the latest example.

“We’re always testing new features,” a Facebook spokesperson told Mashable. “Facebook started providing the option to add an ‘Expected: Child’ as a way for users to more accurately express their identity.”

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