This week twitter had their wrists slapped because of users tweets that a footballer had been playing away. Those who have tweeted about the affair behind the ‘super injunction’ have been left feeling rather smug. An estimated 75,000 tweeters as well as attention seeking MP ‘John Hemming’ can stand up proud and say we outed Ryan Giggs, whay, Wohoo….but is it really our business??
A super injunction v twitter?
Social networks like twitter provide a great outlet for viral gossip which can include people looking for an ego boost, a stunt to increase user followers but more often that not people on twitter are just lost following the ‘in crowd’ and trending keywords.
I think there are boundaries for social media especially the invasion into peoples personal lives, although not everyone knows or cares what those boundaries are. There are many people however that see the virtual world as a sub reality of their ‘real lives’ so in essence the online world is often a form of escapism from individuals true daily lives.
Its easy to forget what we do and say online can have such an influence on others. This article is about understanding that there is still a place in this world for morals (even if Giggsy ‘may’ be missing them). To be honest its hardly ground breaking news to open the gossip columns of a red rag and find a football player is sorry for accidentally sleeping with a reality star but in most cases it doesnt go as far as a super injunction.
Twitter cannot lay down new laws just for the UK
Moving on a few days Tony Wang the European chief of twitter has said that ‘users of twitter who break privacy injunctions could face court action’ in the UK. Not one to point out the public verbal confusion from a social super chief but considering the amount of fake accounts on twitter, auto tweeters, fake email addresses etc this could be rather hard to enforce these laws. Thats a big case against 75,000 people for tweeting about Ryan Giggs prior to it being ‘officially’ blabbed by the MP who had parliamentary privilege to gossip.
Now 75,000 people lined up for a group court appearance would be amusing and worth a family day out, but its not going to happen, especially considering some of these users would be too young to prosecute, some accounts claimed as hacked and hundreds of ‘I didnt realise’ excuses.
I would question the general understanding of a ‘super injuntion’ as how many tweeters really knew they could be breaking the law and in fact were they? Apparently over 80 super injunctions have been taken out in the UK in recent years by footballers, celebs and wealthy business people mainly to protect them from marital indiscretions.
Have you broken a super injunction?
I am not trying to defend Ryan Giggs here, in fact on wages that probably approach £100,000 a week he must feel invincible at times. But a super injunction doesnt appear so super in the long term, so Mr Giggs should forget attempts to ‘apparently’ sue twitter users. The tweeting gossip gangs wont disappear, twitter and all of its users are bigger than any super duper injunction and the laws are not concrete enough online to prevent this happening again.
Finally one thing is for sure, this wont be the last time we hear of a super injunction being spun across social networks. I for one wont be jumping on the tweet wagon shouting about who is sleeping with who, partly because I don’t care, partly because ‘C’ listers don’t deserve the publicity and partly because I have morals and standards. Do you?