There has been a recent slew of tweets made by celebrities that they wish they hadn’t have made. Politicians are in that fray also. It’s so easy to send out a quick tweet without thinking of the consequences, and as a result, there are many celebrities in big trouble over careless tweets.
Careless tweets have landed a host of celebrities in trouble in the past with comedian Alan Davies, Sir Bob Geldof’s daughter Peaches and Sally Bercow all finding themselves in legal difficulties due to their online posts.
Social media users have also found themselves in contempt of a court – nine people admitted naming the woman raped by footballer Ched Evans on Facebook and Twitter.
They were all told to pay the victim £624 each.
Legal Warnings for Tweeters
Social media users have been warned they could be breaking the law by commenting on court cases online. The Attorney General will issue previously unpublished advisory notes to help prevent people committing a contempt of court.
Social Media Users “Easy to Prosecute”
Social media users who knowingly break court orders by posting prohibited information online, such as the identities of James Bulger’s killers, can “easily” be prosecuted, a legal expert has warned.
Legal Warnings to be Published for Social Media Users
The Attorney General will publish legal guidance notes online to help prevent Facebook and Twitter users from breaking the law by inappropriately commenting on court cases.
The Government’s chief legal adviser Dominic Grieve QC will in future issue previously unpublished advisory notes in a bid to stop social media users from committing a contempt of court.
He said the move was designed to make sure that fair trials take place and will apply to court cases in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The advisories, which have previously only been issued to the media, are being put into the public domain so people avoid legal pitfalls by commenting on court cases in a potentially prejudicial manner.
The advisories will be published on the Attorney General’s Office (AGO) section of the gov.uk website and also through the AGO’s Twitter feed – @AGO_UK.
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It’s not only celebrities that can get in big trouble over careless tweets… businesses are starting to prosecute tweeters spreading bad information about their businesses. When big businesses team up against regular consumers, there is very little the consumer can do. The morrow of the story is to think through what you’re broadcasting before you tweet!