Paul Chambers Found Guilty For Menacing Tweet Claiming to Bomb an Airport. Fined £3,600. #twitterjoketrial


Earlier in the year, Paul Chambers (@pauljchambers found himself sitting at Robin Hood Airport in South Yorkshire, grounded because of snow. In his frustrations, he shot off a quick tweet saying “Robin Hood Airport is closed. You’ve got a week… otherwise I’m blowing the airport sky high!” Now obviously, that wasn’t the best course of action given the touchy state the world is in these days in regards to bombs and public modes of transportation. But a “serious” threat…?

Apparently so according to the Judge at Downcaster Crown Court. With that said, ensuing courtroom battles and appeals have finally ended with Mr. Chambers being on the loosing end. His original ruling ended with a fine of £685 total, including fines and court costs. The appeal however, wasn’t nearly as lite on his wallet — now up to £3,000. The bigger and more damaging result, however, is the lack of employers willing to hire him. Since the infamous tweet, Paul lost his job and hasn’t been able to find anyone willing to employ him since — making paying back hefty court fines all the more difficult.

Should Paul Chambers have been punished? That’s a complex question. Yeah, he used poor judgement. And no, you can’t just go blatantly spouting off bomb threats — joke or not — to the public. But a having to pay the prosecution’s court costs on top of his £1,000 is stupid. As for the prosecution’s argument of tweet being “obviously menacing”, anyone with half a brain cell (obviously no one holding a government-paid position) can look at the tweet and tell it’s not serious. I’ll even give you 2 hours to research the guy and the day in which it happened — seeing as how weather was the cause of frustration and the resulting tweet.

Of course, if you look at the possible outcomes, £3,600 is relatively lite in comparison to any prison time. What do you guys think: Justified or ridiculous?

Via: BBC, Guardian



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Author: Mike

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Gadget lover, smartphone collector, and beer connoisseur. I've been writing about gadgets for three years now and loving every minute of it. Outside of the digital landscape, I enjoy being active outdoors. I'm always up for a good conversation, so feel free to drop me a line!