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ExtraTorrent.cc > Articles > Canadian Court Found a Man not Guilty in Online Harassment Case

Canadian Court Found a Man not Guilty in Online Harassment Case

Canadian Court Found a Man not Guilty in Online Harassment Case

Added: Tuesday, January 26th, 2016
Category: Recent Headlines Involving File Sharing > Ridiculous Criminal Trials
Tags:ET, p2p, Torrent, Piracy, Peer To Peer, Network, Hackers, Internet, BitTorrent, Google, utorrent, bitcomet, extratorrent, www.extratorrent.cc, 2016
A Canadian has been found not guilty of criminally harassing women via Twitter: this case became the first example of Canadian courts considering the case of harassment on the social media platform.

Toronto police arrested a Canadian citizen more than three years ago on allegations that he harassed two feminist activists over the course of several months via Twitter. Both of the victims had blocked his account, thus effectively preventing him from viewing their tweets or directing messages at their accounts, but the prosecution charged the man with sending an “incessant and obsessive amount of tweets” referring to the victims obliquely and using hashtags where he believed they might come across his tweets.

When considering the case, the judge discussed the nature of communication on the microblogging platform, the right to freedom of expression, and what kind of expectations of private communication Twitter users might have. The judge also made a conclusion that the legislation against harassment doesn’t interpret the use of a particular hashtag in a tweet as communications.

In the meantime, the power of Twitter hashtags has been debated for a while now: for example, two years ago, Wall Street Journal columnist used the term “weaponized hashtag” to explain the phenomenon when “loosely organized and barely controlled social mobs swarm institutions and individuals could turn trending of the hashtag into news”. Back in 2014, “weaponized hashtags” meant social media campaigns by activists trying to expose racism, sexism, and homophobia.

Finally, the judge ruled that the Canadian individual’s tweets were “obscene and homophobic in at least 2 instances”, but they were not threatening. As a result, the charges were dismissed. Many Twitter users celebrated the man’s acquittal using the hashtag #FreedomOfTweets, often directing sexist and abusive language toward the complainants.

In the meantime, the challenge of combatting harassment while respecting freedom of speech has plagued almost all social media platforms. A for Twitter, its management had to admit responsibility for the platform’s failure to address harassment in an internal memo in 2015, mentioning the abuse and trolls existing on Twitter for years.

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Date:  Tuesday, January 26th, 2016

Comments (3) (please add your comment »)

posted by Trusted UploaderSite FriendET loverSupermanKitty (2016-01-26 21:59:18)
SirSeedsAlot avatarLife has trolls. Get over it. This is an issue for Twitter to resolve not the courts.

posted by (2016-01-27 11:40:23)
No avatarI saw this case a long time ago. It was actually the feminazi's who were harassing the man. They conducted what is called "doxing" because he does not agree that women are as suppressed as some of them think.

posted by (2016-01-29 11:45:42)
No avatarive stumbled across zillions of trolls in my years online, got me thinking, do they need a troll rehab? maybe trolling is a mental illness and a troll is not legally responsible for the actions they do because they are slightly crazy. if anyone every has a problem with a troll, lesson 101 appendiz A, gain info to troll the troll back (they hate that kinda thing) .........long live extra torrent

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