A piece of wisdom is that one should never make a big decision when he is upset or in despair. The same holds true for those who use social media websites such as Twitter when dealing with those unhappy emotions. What you feel may be a negative but harmless Tweet about a person or an organization could be taken seriously, so much so that law enforcement gets involved. You could find yourself having to answer questions inside of a police station all because of the 140 or fewer characters that you posted on Twitter. Even one wrong Tweet can get you arrested in certain situations.
Different countries have different laws and regulations about this type of thing. A racist or homophobic slur that is Tweeted out by an American civilian who is using Twitter while on American soil may receive criticism and angry messages from other users. The person probably won't have to worry about being arrested unless a threat of some sort is also a part of the Tweet. That is not the case in every country, however, and knowing the laws of the land is vital for those who wish to use websites such as Twitter to send out what could be considered to be controversial or hateful Tweets.
Some might assume that it is only youngsters who do not understand that one can be arrested because of Twitter use. That, as you will see in this piece, is not the case. People who have taken to Twitter to racially abuse professional athletes, such as well-known footballers, have been arrested as recently as earlier this year. Tweets delivered with the intent to threaten the lives of others have gotten people in serious trouble with law enforcement. Here is a good rule for Twitter regardless of where you live: If you think for even a second that a Tweet might get you arrested, you should probably avoid posting it.
10 Ice Cream Theft
9 The Pink Fan
8 Bin Lorry Tweet
7 Threatening the President
6 The 15-Year-Old
5 The Drunk Driver
3 California Teenager
2 American Airlines Threat
1 The “Purge”
The main plot of the movie The Purge involves citizens being able to commit crimes without having to worry about being arrested. 20-year-old Carlos Anthony Hollins of Maryland learned in September 2015 that Tweeting out that you would like to conduct a purge of your own, one that involves killing all of the “white ppl in the town of La Plata,” will be frowned upon by law enforcement. According to a story posted on the NBC Washington website, Hollins was arrested and charged for making that threat. Whether he meant it or not, Hollins probably regrets sending out the Tweet.
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