Social media such as Twitter and Facebook makes anyone a publisher, and that’s disrupting the media industry, but the legal system isn’t much better off, since the courts like to control the flow of information almost as much as the media does. British courts in particular are wrestling with the impact of these technologies on their ability to control the publicity around a trial. In the latest move, a judge has issued an injunction that specifically bans the publication of any information involving the case via Twitter or Facebook. But in the battle of social media vs the courts, the former will almost certainly win.
Well, this sounds absurd. Is this an injunction against the people in the courtroom who are first-hand sources, or the republishing of information about what they’ve said, via Twitter? The language seems to suggest an extremely broad interpretation, but you’d have to be a certifiable nut to think you could control the flow of Twtter.
Now, Facebook – that’s another story.