I’ve found numerous websites, blogs, Facebook pages, and Twitter accounts that are devoted to shaming individual deadbeat dads and moms who fail to pay child support. Below are two commercial services with different approaches.
DeadbeatDirectory.Com, with a logo that looks like a Grateful Dead image, wants to be “the #1 source for humiliating deadbeats of the world!”
Anyone can search this website for specific individuals by name.
Only members may post profiles, photos, and stories — any information they choose to provide. Signing up is free and requires only a user name, password, and email address.
There’s lots of heavy-duty, mumbo-jumbo legal disclaimers on the website. The company makes it clear they do not vouch for the accuracy of the information, which consists of “rumors, speculation, assumptions, gossip, and opinions.”
Helping deadbeats hide
It’s a bit ironic that the site also includes links to several third party name removal services. So alleged deadbeats can pay those companies to try to get their names deleted from DeadbeatDirectory.com and other online lists of deadbeat dads (or liars, cheaters, and general evil-doers).
DeadbeatDadsFlorida.com is a paid service provider. (Update Oct. 12, 2014: This link seems to be broken.)
The person submitting the info about the deadbeat has to give her own name, email address, physical address, and phone number.
However, you must provide documentation from the court that the deadbeat’s payments have been delinquent for at least two months. Photos plus any information such as last known address, car, or employer are submitted. The company posts the info on their website and sends a text and/or email to the offender to let them know they are now featured online. For an additional fee, the deadbeat’s friends and family will also be notified. The website is inconsistent about the monthly cost; it’s either $9.99 or $14.95 and renews until you cancel. The site currently has only four Floridian deadbeats listed (including a woman) and one file without any personal info that is marked “paid.”
Shaming deadbeats to get them to pay
Do these services exist only to provide an outlet for victims to vent?
Do you think it is justified to humiliate someone online by telling only one side of the story?
Doesn’t this approach backfire if it becomes harder for a deadbeat to get a job to pay for child support?
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Image © iStock.com/Spauln