Twitterer fined £1,000 for airport bomb joke
10th May 2010 | 14:28
Be careful what you tweet
Twitter user Paul Chambers has been found guilty of threatening to bomb Doncaster's Robin Hood Airport via the micro-blogging service - even though his tweet was meant to be a joke.
And while #twitterjoketrial continues to gain traction, the real question is this: is it okay to make a joke about blowing up an airport on a public communications network?
For Paul Chambers, the answer is clearly "no, it wasn't" because he has just obtained a criminal record and a £1,000 fine for doing so.
Crap! Bomb airport!
Chambers has been prosecuted under section 127 of the Communications Act 2003 for sending an "indecent, obscene or menacing" message for Tweeting:
"Crap! Robin Hood Airport is closed. You've got a week... otherwise I'm blowing the airport sky high!"
So just be careful what you say on Twitter, is the lesson learned here.
Chambers now has a £1,000 fine and a criminal record, for threatening to bomb an airport on a publicly viewed communications system.
Was he an idiot for doing so? Or has he been unfairly scapegoated for a throwaway tweet?
This is one ruling which may have reverberations regarding what users can say on Twitter and get away with.