This is unbelievable.
A bored traveller, stuck in an airport, Tweets – “Sort it out. You’ve got a week, or I’m blowing this airport sky high”. Which he sends to his friends. It’s not a funny joke. It’s not a funny joke at all, but it’s sent out of frustration.
Somebody reports him to the airport for it. One of his “friends”. The airport authorities then pass it on to the police.
He gets taken to court, and the judge cites section 127 of the Communications Act, vis a vis – “it is an offence for a person to send a menacing message over a telecommunications network”.
Guess what? The guy – Paul Chambers – is found guilty. He’s fined a grand, and gets a criminal record. He’s halfway through an accountancy degree, which he now can’t finish. No firm’s gonna employ him with a criminal record. One moment of madness, and his life is ruined.
Full story here, at the invaluable Jack of Kent blog.
Unbelievable. Just unbelievable.
As you might expect, shitstorm erupts. Everyone piling in.
And there, in the middle of it, is this…
@stephenfry: @paulchambers Happy to pay your fine for you.
Just when you think that man can’t be any nicer, he does something like this. I love him. I love Stephen Fry dearly, and I don’t care who knows it.
With any luck there’ll be an outcry and an appeal. There’s a fund going on Twitter already, with hundreds pledging to help. In which case, I’m stumping up a tenner towards legal costs. Because if we’ve come to this, the idiots have truly won and we might as well all lie down and die. I really believe that. This nonsensical paranoia must be stopped. I don’t know how, but it *has to be stopped* before the human race drowns face down in a pool of its own bodily waste. That’s where we’re heading, and I’d rather not be around when it happens.