May 092011
 May 9, 2011  Posted by  Court, Non-U.S., Online

Associated Press reports:

A Twitter user has set up an account claiming to expose celebrities who have obtained court-issued gag orders in Britain to protect their privacy.

The account posted six tweets and attracted nearly 25,000 followers since its first message hit the Internet less than 24 hours ago.

The tweets touched off a firestorm in the British media Monday, raising further questions about the effectiveness of the gag orders in the Internet age.

Read more in the Chicago Tribune. Over in the UK, socialite Jemima Khan took to the British media to deny a tweet that named her as being involved in a super-injunction and to talk about the potential affect of such allegedly false allegations on her children.

Over on The Guardian, Owen Bowcott and Ben Quinn report:

The alleged identities of those who resorted to the courts to protect reputations or privacy were spilled out in a public challenge to the restrictions imposed on reporting and broadcasting.

Several Twitter tags led to a sequence of exchanges that delighted in claiming to show that the high court could not silence the more rebellious reaches of social media sites. But later it appeared that the names of the celebrities allegedly involved were removed from one Twitter account. [Note: @superinjunction appears to be the Twitter account being referenced; the account of @injunctionsuper is not redacted as of the time of this posting – Dissent]

The onslaught follows attempts last week to rewrite the Wikipedia entries of several individuals said to have obtained superinjunctions.

In the Commons, two MPs, the Liberal Democrat John Hemmings and the Conservative Matthew Offord, have tried to use parliamentary privilege to question the use of injunctions.

I’ve covered the issue of UK courts issuing super-injunctions a number of times on this blog. It seems like some people are fed up with what they may perceive as the rich and powerful being able to shield their privacy more than the rest of us and have taken to this type of action. This type of situation will not only create more of a firestorm over super-injunctions, but will also likely fuel the fires about anonymous posts or tweets, if, as Jemima Khan alleges, the tweets are not accurate.

So could this lead to greater pressure for fewer super-injunctions? Yes. Could it also lead to a clampdown on anonymous speech? Yes, I fear it may.

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