Internet Law And Social Media in The UK
The internet is often deemed to be like the Wild West. It is viewed as a lawless region where people can act outside the laws of the land. This is not the case. The jail sentences handed down to a number of individuals who tweeted or posted Facebook messages about the riots in England in August clearly illustrate that there laws governing what can be posted online carry real consequences. Breaking the law online is as serious as breaking the law offline.
The law that the social media users broke was the Serious Crime Act 2007. Although the law was not set up to cover the use of social media, the use of social media was much lower in 2007 than it is now, the law of the land applies online to the same degree that it does off line.
The Serious Crime Act 2007 states that either “intentionally encouraging or assisting an offence” or “encouraging or assisting an offence believing it will be committed” is viewed as being as serious as carrying out the act itself. So if you post a Facebook message encouraging people to riot and loot then it …