24 May, 2011

Ryan Giggs Super Injunction :A Case of Freedom of Speech Online

Can the Courts regulate freedom of speech online under the aegis of "Right to Privacy" or "Defamatory Laws"  ,and or, other related laws? and even if they "try" to do so, is it an exercise in futility seeing the rapid advancement  and universal appeal of social networks and its tools such as Twitter, MySpace and Facebook?That's a question that will leave even the most advanced juridical mind boggled with its complexity as there are different legal regimes and questions of Jurisdiction/conflict of laws that would govern the issue . The acid test has been proven this week when a UK Court issued a mandatory (Super) Injunction prohibiting the naming and discussion of an alleged affair involving a  famous UK Footballer Ryan Giggs and a Reality TV Star Imogen Thomas .

But the said Order made the buzz on Twitter even more virulent as more than 75,000 Tweeps   discussed the footballer with abject abandon in a clear show that the law in Britain needs to be looked at afresh when it comes to Freedom of Speech and emerging technologies. For example it would be impracticable to arrest , prosecute and imprison the over 75,000 Twitter users who openly named the player. Infact the openess of Twitter made it possible or rather emboldened mainstream Media to cover the story without fear of incurring further Legal Liability for publishing the same (See BBC news item on Ryan Giggs).

The story is of interest to most internet users and is a demonstration of perhaps the changes that Laws in different Jurisdictions should envisage as the World becomes more technologically  interwoven.Whereas the Injunction my be binding in UK, one could verily discuss the issue outside that Jurisdiction.

Now for the humorous ,this Tweet by @GoalGodNando has just a funny limb to it:

Ryan Giggs has probably scored more times off the pitch than I have on it for Chelsea...... viva la torres

or this Tweet

Imogen Thomas' sex tape leaked on Internet. Not downloading though, it's about 11 giggs.

Regulating online content will perhaps be the enigma of current lawmakers and Jurist in the World right now irrespective of the Country.

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