Friday, 6 December 2013

Anything you tweet can and will be used against you

This week's blog post from me is serious stuff. No seriously, it seriously is.

Can't you see I have my *serious face* on.



This week the UK's Attorney General - he's the main legal advisor to the Government - issued guidelines about the use of social media.

And it's important that we all consider them carefully - because ultimately, otherwise, we could all go to prison. And I don't fancy having to slurp my milk through bars while the bigger cellmates eye me up for a catfight.

The AG, Dominic Grieve MP, wants to prevent social media users from causing problems with on-going trials in courts. This can happen if they tweet stuff that could compromise cases and evidence.

That's known as Contempt of Court and it's really serious. See *serious face* yet again. You can end up with two years in black and white stripy outfits - and I much prefer ginger.

So to combat this, in future the Government will start putting advisory notices about current trials out via its @AGO_UK Twitter feed so those on Facebook and the 140 character network can see the sort of rules that apply to traditional publishers and broadcasters.

Mr Grieve says: "This is not about telling people what they can or cannot talk about on social media; quite the opposite in fact, it’s designed to help facilitate commentary in a lawful way.

"I hope that by making this information available to the public at large, we can help stop people from inadvertently breaking the law, and make sure that cases are tried on the evidence, not that people have found online."

At ThinkWall, we are very careful with what gets posted on our screens when displayed at your office, a conference, an event, a party or wherever you put us.

It's the thing we take most seriously, apart from making sure our ThinkWall is set up and working when and where you need it.

We'll spend time identifying things you don't want shown in public, because we all know that some Tweeters can go a bit too far. And we can block certain words or phrases too.

Tweeting is fun, but it can get out of hand and go too far. We've all seen the stories about people hauled over the coals by the authorities for stuff they've mentioned or said.

In fact, in a survey for knowthenet.org.uk, only 42% of people successfully passed a test for defamation - which broadly is saying something negative about someone that just isn't true.
So don't tweet without thinking of the consequences first, otherwise you could end up eating porridge.

*end of serious face*