Over at Jack of Kent's blog you can follow the latest outrage against freedom of speech in the UK, where Mr Paul Chambers was convicted under section 127 of the Communications Act 2003. This provides, inter alia:
A person is guilty of an offence if he— .
sends by means of a public electronic communications network a message or other matter that is grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character; or
causes any such message or matter to be so sent.
This is a shockingly illiberal law, but the way it's been applied in this case is even more so. Chambers was convicted for sending a "menacing" message ... in the form of the following intemperate, ill-advised, but surely jocular tweet:
Crap! Robin Hood Airport is closed. You’ve got a week and a bit to get your shit together, otherwise I’m blowing the airport sky high!
The trial judge held that
I am therefore satisfied, so that I am sure, that the defendant sent the message via “Twitter” and it was of a menacing nature in the context of the times in which we live. Furthermore I am satisfied the defendant was, at the very least, aware that this was of a menacing nature and I find him guilty of the offence.
The case is now being appealed. Hopefully this "disgraceful and illiberal judgment" (per Jack of Kent) will be overturned.