Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) is a mysterious respiratory virus that causes sudden fever, cough, and breathing problems and was first diagnosed in Asia in 2002. It is now believed to be responsible for more than 1,000 deaths worldwide.
Debmar Highsmith (short for Dumavandi Pangibu) is a graphic designer living in London. In the past few weeks, he posted links to the footage of Britian's Health Protection Agency on his Facebook page. He also covered the story on his Twitter account, , and worked with other artists on a graphic design collection associated with the virus' name.
The project was a labor of love for Highsmith, who viewed it as an opportunity to explore the privacy implications of the internet.
"I wanted to do something fun, and use this to explore privacy as something that's being blurs between social media and other online sources," he said to Vox.
He didn't realize that his posts—which featured several different versions of the video by using different filters, like those used on Snapchat—had violated Facebook's privacy settings, and Facebook did not notify him of its violation.
"I didn't realize the filter works that way," he told Snopes. "I don't think anyone would have been upset if I wanted to share the video themselves."
Highsmith's posts were subsequently deleted from Facebook, and one that was still live as of this writing has already been deleted and replaced with a warning to change the app's privacy settings.
The HPA and Highsmith did not immediately respond to a request for comment.