Legislating cyberbullying could lead to restrictions on freedom of expression

Legislating to make cyberbullying a criminal offence could lead to restrictions on freedom of expression.

That is according to Digital Rights Ireland who say that the law is robust enough at the moment to deal with online abusers, but that gardaí need more resources to track them down.

There is a provision in law to charge persistent online trolls with harrassment.

However T.J McIntyre of Digital Rights Ireland has said that new stricter legislation could also clamp down on freedom of speech.

“Laws like this have already been struck down in places like New York, India and in each case they say the same thing that these standards that are being imposed, with criminal sanctions, were so vaque that they chilled freedom of expression.

“They put people at fear that if they said something nasty about a politician they could end up a criminal as a result.”


Most Read in Ireland