Twitter joke trial

So it’s the appeal on the #TwitterJokeTrial tomorrow (details here).

It is interesting how when discussing Mr Chambers’ original twitter posting, many are careful to refer to it as “ill-conceived”, “misjudged”, and/or “admittedly not very funny”, before going on to discuss why it was nevertheless wrong for him to end up with a conviction for it.

I’m not sure if I would even say that. I would have thought that it was the sort of thing that anyone might have posted on somewhere like Twitter. That it was mere light-hearted hyperbole was immediately obvious to anyone reading it. I am quite sure that no-one was genuinely ‘menaced’ by it (if indeed it is even a “message” sent by means of a “public electronic telecommunications system” at all). It is only with hindsight of the ridiculous and frankly totally unforeseeable consequences that ensued that one would even say that it was particularly ill-conceived or misjudged.

It is very regrettable that Mr Chambers has ended up with a criminal conviction for this twitter posting and I wish him and his legal team (at least some of whom I gather are admirably acting pro bono) the best of luck in getting it quashed.

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