Let’s face it, 10 years ago we weren’t anticipating law suits that revolved around Facebook, Myspace, and Youtube. In fact, 10 years ago the appropriate answer would have been, “Facebook, huh?”
Today I read an article about a former high school student who is suing her former principal (she in now in college) for suspending her after creating a page or group or something about how bad one of her teachers was. She basically wants the suspension taken off her record.
The defense for the girl is claiming that her first amendment right to
free and unfettered exchange of ideas and opinions in the public arena
was violated, discounted, neglected, however you want to say it.
This doesn’t sound like the big case coming, but eventually there will be a supreme court ruling that is going to decide how free your speech is in the online social playground. One day, a case like this will be the
straw that breaks the camels back
So, it poses a decent question: What can and can’t you say on Facebook, Youtube, Myspace, etc.? Obviously, we don’t want to talk about things that are already illegal like slander, but can you make a group about a teacher you don’t like? Ignore the feeling bad for the teacher part and just think about the question. We already have ratemyprofessors.com, how is that any different? Do we have to go to that persons facebook and read what they have to say? Do you have to come to my blog and read what I have to say? Can your boss, or potential boss, make a decision to fire or hire you based on what they see on website about your social life?
These are all important questions and I am curious to see how the rulings begin to pan out as the technology and interaction of culture continues to move forward and change.