What would Voltaire make of Twitter?

November 16, 2012

I’m not sure the great man would be defending to the death the right of people to publish malicious, unsubstantiated and defamatory rumour as facts to millions of people.

And in the same vein I reckon Lord McAlpine’s drive to sue anyone on Twitter who defamed him will probably do a greater service to modern journalism than 1000 Leveson Inquiries.

If people find themselves in court or handing over a huge wodge of cash because they Tweeted a lie then they will be inclined to think much more carefully about the veracity of what they say the next time they publish.

Sort of like journalists have to.


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