Warning! This post contains language which may be offensive to some. Please do not read it if you find profanity objectionable or if it makes you feel uncomfortable.
The "Hole" rockstar allegedly made outrageous statements about fashion designer Dawn Simorangkir on Twitter, Myspace, and other media, after Simorangkir sent Love an invoice for clothes Simorangkir had designed for Love.
Here are some of the more shocking allegations of libel in no particular order (spelling mistakes included):
- "she has a history of dealing cocaine, lost all custody of her child, assualt, and burglary."
- "nasty hosebag lying thief"
- "she’s an assault addict herself"
- "vile horrible lying bitch"
- "is my clothes my WARDROBE! oi vey don’t fuck with my wradrobe or you willend up in a circle of corched eaeth hunted till your dead."
It is clear to anyone that if these allegation are true, they would be extremely offensive and defamatory. But that’s not the reason why I’m writing this post.
This case is novel not because of the alleged rantings of a celebrity, but because it is the first defamation lawsuit involving comments made on Twitter.
I have talked about it a lot of times on Twitter and I knew it would be coming soon.
And now it’s here.
The point is that Twitterers need to be careful about what they post on Twitter. It is too easy to post something that can come back to haunt you later. People have lost jobs or have been reprimanded for misusing Twitter, and yes, you can even get sued for internet defamation.
So now that I’ve pointed out the problem, what can you do to avoid getting sued on Twitter? Here you go:
- Listen To Your Mother – Remember when you mother said, "honey, if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all." Well, your mother was absolutely right. Even if what you say is not technically defamation, you still might get sued. Do you want to get sued? I didn’t think so.
- Don’t Drink & Tweet – Drinking leads to stupid decision-making. Just don’t do it. I was thinking about tweeting during a friend’s bachelor party last weekend in Vegas, and someone gave me great advice. Don’t do it! He said. Because of his advice, what happened in Vegas will stay in Vegas.
- Don’t Use Your Real Name – If you insist on making negative comments about others, I would implore you not to use your real name on Twitter. You have a right to anonymous speech and you should exercise it. Just know that the law will hold you accountable if you break it; and know that if an experienced internet defamation lawyer wants to obtain your identity, he or she eventually will with enough effort. So I will repeat: Listen to your mother.
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