German Politician Behaves Like A Teenager On Facebook, Has Affair With 16-Year-Old
Many adults nowadays have Facebook, but their conduct on the social media site is often deemed more conservative than that of teens and tweens. There are, of course, frequent status updaters and Facebook oversharers of all stripes and ages. But generally speaking, adults tend to keep the status updates, photo uploads, and check-ins to a tame number. That would not be the case with Christian von Boetticher, a 40-year-old German state legislator who resigned last week because of his overactive Facebook conduct coupled with an affair with a teenage girl.
Boetticher’s affair was legal given that the girl was 16 years old, but his constituents were more so bothered by their collegue’s frequent Facebook updates.
Long before news of the affair became public, colleagues expressed concerns that Mr. Boetticher dallied on the site too much, sharing information about his social life in status updates the party might have preferred remained private.
He posted about polo parties and expensive bottles of Brunello di Montalcino wine he had just opened. Der Spiegel magazine reported that he had skipped a political discussion to watch a lunar eclipse, then posted about it on his wall.
In true yet stereotypical European fashion, Boetticher’s colleagues found his conduct on the website to be more reprehensible than his affair with the young girl; her family was well aware of their relationship. But the avid posting was costing him his professionalism:
Last year he wrote a status update that said he “has been sitting since 9 o’clock in the Statehouse in Kiel!!! One meeting after another. That’s enough!” The Hannoversche Allgemeine Zeitung reported that a fellow politician said, “I think I need to register with Facebook so I can communicate with him.”
Boetticher ended up resigning over the relationship, despite that it was legal, which was considered quite “American” to his fellow German politicians. Right before announcing his resignation, Boetticher deleted his Facebook account implying that his cavalier use of the platform was also to blame.