“Pretoria – A Johannesburg man has won a landmark case involving Facebook and an ex-friend who had made slanderous remarks about him on her wall. Judge Nigel Willis’s judgement last week means that users may in future sue for damages when they are defamed in remarks made on Facebook, reported the Saturday Star.”
The problem with this judgement is that we are living in an increasingly censored world. It is almost as if taking offence has become a South African pastime. Where do we draw the line when it comes too things like this? Almost everything anyone can and will say, never mind just racism, bigotry, criticism, ridicule, sarcasm, can be interpreted as defamatory or insulting by someone else. Simply having a point of view contradictory to that of the majority can be interpreted as being an insult. I agree that you can’t have people slandering each other all over social media websites, but where does freedom of speech fit into this equation?
The problem is that certain types of people feel that they can say whatever they like on social media websites, without it having any real world consequences as some movie and sports stars recently found out. If they said the same things face to face to someone else, there would be consequences of the blue eyed broken front teeth kind. Why should it be any different just because it is being said on a social media website? The same rules of libel and defamation should apply if untrue comments were made on a social media website.
I would like to comment on this judgement, but Judge Willis might just sue me for defaming him on his decision he made. I might also run the risk of defaming the woman who defamed the man that has defamed the court system with this stupid court case.