Foot-in-Mouth Syndrome and Social Media

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In order to protect freedom of speech and to limit prosecutions related to offensive or false Twitter of Facebook interaction, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) issued interim guidelines this week in this new domain for the legal system.  For example, if an inappropriate tweet was sent after heavy drinking and if the tweet is subsequently deleted upon sobering up and an apology sent, this is acceptable and the CPS will not get involved.

A few members of my friends and family suffer from serious foot-in-mouth syndrome which is hilarious at times, shocking at other times, but give people like them a public platform and a ‘send’ or ‘publish’ button and disaster is sure to follow.

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The guideline was drawn up after the CPS case against an accountant who joked on Twitter about bombing an airport was dropped.  Court proceedings were deemed a heavy-handed approach as the accountant clearly didn’t intend to carry out his proposal.  It’s a sad sign of our times that joking about bombing places seems to be part of thoughtless conversation.  However, perhaps people who use Twitter and Facebook just need to unfollow or unlike these clowns and hope they get bored of tweeting to themselves.

Bubbly

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