Let's End Twitter Libel

Let's End Twitter Libel

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I want to change social media libel laws so a share or retweet is not considered libellous. Also, cap payouts for individuals in libel cases so they do not have to pay obscene figures and legal fees. A cap of £10,000 sounds reasonable to me, but that figure could be debated, it's the principle that's important.

A friend of mine recently had to defend a court case in which the litigants were operating on No Win No Fee. As they were insured, they faced no risk, but my friend risked losing everything if she lost. My friend was being sued for a simple Retweet on Twitter. This is wrong. No one should ever be sued for a retweet. 

Thankfully my friend won her case, but the stress she endured was enormous. UK libel laws are designed to protect the rich and powerful. An innocent retweet can cost you your house and car, such are the astronomical costs involved in libel cases. 

Many people are intimidated into settling, even if they've done no wrong, and are forced to issue retractions/apologies and still pay a settlement figure. The implications on freedom of speech and natural justice are quite horrifying.

We are now seeing lawyers specialising in social media libel when there should be no such thing. A Retweet or Share should never be considered libellous and payouts for individuals should be capped at £10,000 to stop vexatious practices in there tracks.

We have even seen celebrities tell their followers to actively look out for actionable libel on their behalf. Surely this is not in the spirit of the law.

 

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