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UK Facebook and Twitter users warned over sharing court case information

Matt Brian, @m4tt

In an effort to ensure UK courts can conduct fair trials, the UK Attorney General's Office (AGO) will soon start advising Facebook and Twitter users about the dangers of commenting on legal cases. In a world of super-injunctions and tweeted court cases, users have often shared sensitive legal information, believing they are entitled to free speech online. However, Facebook and Twitter posts are subject to the same laws that apply to newspapers and TV media, meaning a status update or a tweet about a case or defendant could go viral, potentially influencing a jury or revealing the names of victims. By publishing guidance, the UK Attorney General will "help stop people from inadvertently breaking the law," reducing the chances of prosecution for contempt and possible imprisonment. Advisories will be delivered via the @AGO_UK Twitter feed and website, giving those who commit contempt of court less wriggle room if they choose to plead ignorance.

[Image Credit: nomsaleena, Flickr]

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