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Facebook the life saver

The trouble with being big, is that people want to knock you down. If you're Facebook, it means that every time someone uses the network to contact someone to rob them, murder them or molest them, there are headlines about 'Facebook killers' and 'Facebook fiends'. But it seems only fair to also talk about the times the social network has helped people out. And this is a great story.

Young Ted Rice, a four-year-old boy from Bury in Lancashire, had a strange rash. His dad wasn't sure what to make of it, so he posted a picture on Facebook to see if anyone recognised it. A doctor friend, Sara Barton, did recognise it - she was horrified to realise young Ted had leukaemia. She sent his dad an urgent message saying to get him to hospital.

Ted is now having chemotherapy, and apparently has a 75% chance of survival. So the story might not have a happy ending. But if they'd waited longer - if his dad had needed to get round to calling Dr. Barton and asking her, or thought it was just an allergy - his chances would be much worse.

So here's to the upside of all our Facebook obsessions. But no, that doesn't mean you should post a picture of those strange spots on your testicles. Some things should just be discussed in the privacy of the doctor's office.

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