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In UK, Twitter, Facebook rants land some in jail

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posted on Nov, 15 2012 @ 08:25 AM
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I guess with more and more people spending time online, the real crime is down? If NO then why are the prisons being populated for such crimes (even for short term). What a waste of money IMO. However it also sheds the light as per how far the censorship laws are being pushed on a daily basis. With the looming
UN Mandates about the same and global push for it, I wonder how long before ATS is forced into it? Certainly FB, Twitter and their likes are already being swarmed by the cyber hounds.


One teenager made offensive comments about a murdered child on Twitter. Another young man wrote on Facebook that British soldiers should "go to hell." A third posted a picture of a burning paper poppy, symbol of remembrance of war dead.

All were arrested, two convicted, and one jailed — and they're not the only ones. In Britain, hundreds of people are prosecuted each year for posts, tweets, texts and emails deemed menacing, indecent, offensive or obscene, and the number is growing as our online lives expand.

Lawyers say the mounting tally shows the problems of a legal system trying to regulate 21st century communications with 20th century laws. Civil libertarians say it is a threat to free speech in an age when the Internet gives everyone the power to be heard around the world.

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Your thoughts/comments/viewpoints/opinions please.




posted on Nov, 15 2012 @ 08:56 AM
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A waste of tax payers money, but in a way I think these morons should be made an example of. More often than not its young lads coming back from the pub and mouthing off because they have nothing better to do and are thick as pig s***. Offensive comments about a murdered child are unforgivable, so some kind of punishment is justifiable.

For all those prosecuted thousands get away with it under false accounts and proxies.



posted on Nov, 15 2012 @ 09:04 AM
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reply to post by Ginga
 
True. However now we're looking at the government to discipline the youth which is something that should normally be handled by Parents and/or society/social responsibility.



posted on Nov, 15 2012 @ 09:34 AM
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We should have the freedom to say whatever we want, however vile, offensive or disgusting... It may make those saying those things horrible individuals but it shouldn't be a criminal offense.

Until those saying those things actually physically act and commit a crime, those who are ""offended"" should grow a set.

I could take offense to anything... think about that... ANYTHING... I complain to the police and they (in this country anyway) are obliged to take action. You could find yourself with a criminal record because I made a complaint against you, not because you committed a crime. That's scary stuff.



posted on Nov, 15 2012 @ 09:47 AM
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reply to post by hp1229
 


Bit of a difficult one, in that i am all in favour of free speech but against false allegations, etc. I suppose for me, the dividing line would be "is it inciting someone to offend?". So, regarding tasteless remarks, they would be fine legally (but perhaps morally questionnable?). However, if someone is, for example, inciting others to riot or attack then that should be an offence (same as if they were doing it in the street). I haven't explained that so well but hopefully you get my drift?



posted on Nov, 15 2012 @ 10:14 AM
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Originally posted by Flavian
reply to post by hp1229
 


Bit of a difficult one, in that i am all in favour of free speech but against false allegations, etc. I suppose for me, the dividing line would be "is it inciting someone to offend?". So, regarding tasteless remarks, they would be fine legally (but perhaps morally questionnable?). However, if someone is, for example, inciting others to riot or attack then that should be an offence (same as if they were doing it in the street). I haven't explained that so well but hopefully you get my drift?
I understood what you were trying to convey. I think if the other forms of punishment and/or allegations and records cost too much tax payers time and money, the best punishment would be to block the internet services/website accounts for the responsible medium (FB, Twitter etc) (ofcourse before 3 warnings) for that particular individual for an hour or two to start and to be increasingly prolonged if incidents continue to persist. It can eventually be turned off for days or suspended.

Currently I'm not sure if the Internet is considered as a medium for emergency broadcast. Telephones (not mobile or cellular services), Cable signals, Radio & TV waves are required to be able to do just that. I'm not sure where the Internet service stands on emergency broadcast services on behalf of the government. Thus it would make it worthwhile to disrupt the services/accounts per incident(s). Imagine the frustration of not being able to use/access the medium that many of us take it for granted these days. Just a thought.
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posted on Nov, 16 2012 @ 01:03 AM
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I guess the laws in the UK are a lot different than in the US. You can say everything they did plus more and I doubt anyone would bat an eyelash in the US. It is all very strange to me.



posted on Nov, 17 2012 @ 07:58 AM
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Some there may be reason for. Many people disagree with war and while the poppy is not so much related to war action, many people may see it as a significant symbol to a horrible conflict.

Not saying I agree with the posts but I think an opinion is an opinion and we should not be taught conformity. However a simple removing of the posts would be adequate. Jail is a bit over the top. In my opinion anyway.

But since I don't know the full details or reasoning behind the comments, I can't say much else.



posted on Nov, 17 2012 @ 08:10 AM
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Originally posted by Mister_Bit
We should have the freedom to say whatever we want, however vile, offensive or disgusting... It may make those saying those things horrible individuals but it shouldn't be a criminal offense.

Until those saying those things actually physically act and commit a crime, those who are ""offended"" should grow a set.

I could take offense to anything... think about that... ANYTHING... I complain to the police and they (in this country anyway) are obliged to take action. You could find yourself with a criminal record because I made a complaint against you, not because you committed a crime. That's scary stuff.
So you have a 5 year old daughter who's been raped and murdered and some punk posts on her Facebook page "The little slut probably deserved it". All her friends, family, teachers etc can see the comment. The hurt it causes is terrible. Would you want that punk punished? Or would you 'grow a set'? No, you'd want to punch him in the face.

How about if I walked up to you in the street and said "Hey buddy, you look like a child molester. What's it like raping babies?" I suppose you'd 'grow a pair' and respect my right to say what I please. No, you'd punch me in the face.

How about if I came to your Mother's funeral and pointed and laughed as she was lowered into the grave? Would you 'grow a set' and respect my right to be a prick? No, you'd punch me in the face. So therefore your argument is invalid.
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edit on 17-11-2012 by IBelieveInAliens because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 17 2012 @ 08:31 AM
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Freedom of speech is the freedom to say things that others may not necessarily like or agree with. It's not meant to protect people from being offended.

It's all well and good to sit back and feel smug and satisfied when somebody gets banged up for saying something you don't like, but what happens when you say something somebody doesn't like?

There's been some cases recently as mentioned in the op and although what people said was either incredibly vulgar or ignorant - they should not be sent to jail. There's almost this sense of indignant outrage when somebody says something on Facebook that might be considered grossly offensive, yet if a comedian such as Jimmy Carr or Frankie Boyle says it everybody sits back and has a good laugh and defends it on the grounds of humour.



posted on Nov, 17 2012 @ 08:34 AM
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reply to post by IBelieveInAliens
 





No, you'd punch me in the face.


Yes but I think there's a difference between being offended and punching someone and being offended and running to the police to have someone prosecuted.

To me it smacks of being at school and running to tell the teacher because someone calls you a name.

There are plenty of idiots out there, but what are we going to do, arrest them all?



posted on Nov, 17 2012 @ 07:26 PM
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Be nice if the police could work closely with ISPs. Send a warning message over the offensive comments. If it persists disconnect them.

Less costly and more efficient.



posted on Nov, 17 2012 @ 07:32 PM
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reply to post by Ginga
 


On the one hand yes.

On the other hand the ISP is then loosing business because of government interference. Loosing money because they provided exactly what they provide to anybody who signs up.

A venue to discuss things. The internet.

I may not agree with what is said, but I respect, honor and will fight for your right to say it. Unless of course your speech will put others in harm.

Screaming fire in a movie theather for example.

The funny part? If they were to propose such a thing, millions of dollars in anti-ad campaigns would be spent overnight by telecoms in response.

The government has NO problem abusing it's own citizens, but it thinks twice about hurting it's corporations.

ETA: This idea that you have the right to not be offended is pretty twisted.

~Tenth
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posted on Nov, 17 2012 @ 08:09 PM
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The thought-police have been around for quite a long time. I strongly believe people should have the freedom to say whatever they want, whenever they want, about whatever they want. Regardless of how disturbing, disgusting or upsetting their opinions may be. People do, and always have had their own opinions, the above poster quite rightly illustrated “you would get a punch in the face” in a non virtual situation. But hold on! how does a punch in the face or being shunned compare to 6 months in prison and a criminal record? That is absurd and extreme. I think: opinions are better known rather than subdued because it is better to know what people REALLY think, as opposed to the fake yes man type opinion, unfortunately if a genuine honest opinion has to be hidden away for fear of prosecution it will force opinion underground, imagine if one person wrote “nasty offensive comment about police” wouldn’t that help forewarn of public opinion in that area, if people were not frightened to also comment on that? Rather than brush it under the carpet to fester away. However if it was a nasty comment about some person that got raped I expect they would naturally lose popularity and get blocked, and henceforth is there even a need to throw them in jail? That is really a debate about what is acceptable and what is not, comedians are subject to the same scrutiny but seem to get away with it, they are not thrown in jail! Does anyone remember “Frankie Boyle: Tramadol Nights”

The other more terrifying issue is: how do THEY find out that some idiot wrote something that they don’t like on facebook? Unless you are friends with someone on face book you are not usually able to see anyone else’s comments, or facebook page, how likely is it that one of your friends “who would usually be of the same ilk” phone the police to complain about something you wrote? The authorities do definitely have a skeleton key, but they must have already been monitoring you? It’s not like they could monitor every facebook page at once. Or is it just stupid people providing all their information online, why would the government ever need to have ID cards when facebook provides the perfect platform. The difference between a face to face is there is no proof, apart from the punched face that you can claim assault for, but on facebook you can’t even really delete anything, even if you ware FRAPED. Fraped for those of you that don’t use face book is a term used to describe forgetting to log off and then some other person discovering and writing anything they like using your profile. It’s not just facebook or social media, that you have to be careful with in the UK, you can even be sent to prison for wearing an offensive t-shirt, as someone recently found out wearing such a t-shirt who got 4 months in jail.



posted on Nov, 20 2012 @ 08:17 AM
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Well, governments arresting people over free speech is nothing new. Although, the intent of the internet is to allow total freedom of speech. I think it is good that people can go online and express themselves in just about any manner they choose.

It would be better if the actual people who use the internet decide of rules; not some people sitting in a government office.



posted on Nov, 21 2012 @ 09:02 AM
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Only pathological or very immature individuals get offended by speech. We shouldnt pander to the lowest common denominator.

Even to incite violence is a good way to purify society. Unstable individuals who get themselves incited shouldnt walk free anyway.




No, you'd punch me in the face.


No, I wouldnt. Normal person would call you an idiot, but there wouldnt be any violence, only morons get into fights due to verbal abuse.

However, if you say things repeatedly to the point of bothering someone, then it may be harrassment.


Grow a thick skin, people! Nobody likes crybabies.
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