Feeds

Feds warn 'pox party' zealots not to send viruses in post

Poxy spit safer than 'live' vaccine say refuseniks

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Health officials in Tennessee have warned parents that giving their children chickenpox-infected lollipops ordered over the internet is not a legitimate substitute for the state's mandatory immunisation programme for the scratch-inducing infection.

The warning from Jerry Martin, US attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee, came after local TV stations ran investigations into a proliferation of Facebook groups that allow parents with an objection to immunisation to take the clearly more natural route of sharing lollipops and other spit-covered items.

It seems there are always parents sceptical of "unnatural" immunisation programmes, particularly those mandated by state of Federal government.

Hence, said the TV stations, the traffic to a Facebook group called "Find a Pox party in your Area", where parents sought to match up their uninfected kids with crispy infected individuals to ensure a more natural infection scenario.

However, it seems, where scheduling conflicts arose, making parties impossible, members were selling and soliciting the body fluids of infected children to facilitate remote transmission. One individual apparently offered a selection of pox-infested items including "suckers, spit and Q-tips" for a mere $50. Which is probably less than the cost of hosting a pox party yourself.

However, another Facebook page, Find a Pox Party Near You, declaimed sending viruses through the mail, but also reeled off a long list of reasons not have the vaccination. These include potential allergies, religious constraints, and that "[t]he chicken pox vaccination is a live-virus vaccine, which can be dangerous". As opposed to the dead version of the virus that you will pickup at a Pox Party.

Other parents have, apparently, solicited measles-infected items – the MMR scare still managing to rattle parents over a decade on.

Martin posed the question: "Can you imagine getting a package in the mail from this complete stranger that you know from Facebook because you joined a group, and say here, drink this purported spit from some other kid?"

More to the point, he reminded needle-phobic parents that sending viruses through the mail is against the law, and could result in a federal prosecution.

We can only be thankful that there is, as yet, no Find a Smallpox Party Near You page. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Win a year’s supply of chocolate (no tech knowledge required)
Over £200 worth of the good stuff up for grabs
Facebook's Zuckerberg in EBOLA VIRUS FIGHT: Billionaire battles bug
US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention contacted as site supremo coughs up
Space exploration is just so lame. NEW APPS are mankind's future
We feel obliged to point out the headline statement is total, utter cobblers
Red Bull does NOT give you wings, $13.5m lawsuit says so
Website letting consumers claim $10 cash back crashes after stampede
Down-under record: Australian gets $140k for pussy
'Tiffany' closes deal - 'it's more common to offer your wife', says agent
Internet finally ready to replace answering machine cassette tape
It's a simple message and I'm leaving out the whistles and bells
Swiss wildlife park serves up furry residents to visitors
'It's ecological' says spokesman, now how would you like your Bambi done?
The iPAD launch BEFORE it happened: SPECULATIVE GUFF ahead of actual event
Nerve-shattering run-up to the pre-planned known event
STONER SHEEP get the MUNCHIES after feasting on £4k worth of cannabis plants
Baaaaaa! Fanny's Farm's woolly flock is high, maaaaaan
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.