The arrest of a teenager on suspicion of posting a picture of a burning poppy on Facebook has triggered fresh allegations of over-zealous policing of the internet.
The 19-year-old was detained on Remembrance Sunday in Canterbury, Kent, after the posting of the image of a poppy being torched by a lighter was reported.
Kent police confirmed that a youth was in custody and being questioned under the Malicious Communications Act 1988. The act makes it a crime to send anything "indecent or grossly offensive, or which conveys a threat … [where] there is an intent to cause distress or anxiety to the recipient". It is usually used against poison pen letters.
The Crown Prosecution Service is drawing up draft guidelines on when to prosecute those who misuse social media websites.
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
UK: Burning a poppy online is now a criminal offense.
UK natural progress on free speech ends up exactly where you expect it.