A Twitter account naming super-injunction celebrities attracted over 34,000 followers in less than a day, sparking fears that the micro-blogging site could face pressure from the UK legal establishment.
The tweets, which were all posted early afternoon on Sunday, list the alleged subjects of some of the super-injunctions awarded in recent months. The Twitter user claimed to ‘out’ a number of celebrities but some appeared to contain errors.
The account, which falsely made claims against Jemima Khan amongst other celebrities, had 34,000 followers on Sunday night, but has since dropped down to just 1, suggesting Twitter have since closed the account.
The widespread discussion of super-injunction celebrities on Twitter highlights the weaknesses of laws preventing newspapers from publishing details about high profile public figures who have obtained gagging orders.
According to a report in the Guardian, Twitter feeds by reporters and newspapers are expected to brought under the regulation of the Press Complaints Commission.
The paper said it’s the first time the body has sought to consolidate social media messages under its remit. The PCC believes that some postings on Twitter are, in effect part of a “newspaper’s editorial product”.
The trade body plans to distinguish between journalists’ public and private tweets, according to the Guardian.
One tweet falsely alleged that Jeremy Clarkson has an injunction preventing the publication or mention of compromising photographs of him and Jemima Khan.
This has been emphatically denied by Khan via her own Twitter account. Jemima Khan tweeted: “Rumour that I have a super injunction preventing publication of “intimate” photos of me and Jeremy Clarkson. NOT TRUE!”
Miss Khan, a free speech campaigner, currently has more than 55,000 followers on Twitter.
Last week Gaby Logan, the BBC sports presenter, hit back at internet rumours that she had obtained a super injunction to block details of an alleged affair with Alan Shearer, the former England footballer.
Many have suggested that super-injunctions are all-but redundant while Twitter goes unpoliced, with the gagging orders currently holding no sway in the online sphere.
However, with the precedent set by the Twitter Joke Trial, in which a user was taken to court for casually joking about an airport bomb, the legal establishment could come down hard on Twitter if they don’t soon start taking action against such accounts.