Experts unlike ruling in Facebook speech case

May 04, 2012 By BROCK VERGAKIS , Associated Press

(AP) -- The "like" button on Facebook seems like a relatively clear way to express your support for something, but a federal judge says that doesn't mean clicking it is constitutionally protected speech.

Exactly what a "like" means - if anything - played a part in a case in Virginia involving six people who say Hampton Sheriff B.J. Roberts fired them for supporting an opponent in his 2009 re-election bid, which he won. The workers sued, saying their First Amendment rights were violated.

One of those workers, Daniel Ray Carter, had "liked" the page of Roberts' opponent, Jim Adams.

While public employees are allowed to speak as citizens on matters of public concern, U.S. District Judge Raymond Jackson ruled that clicking the "like" button does not amount to expressive speech.

Explore further: UN moves to strengthen digital privacy (Update)

1.5 /5 (2 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Citizens United case unlikely to end corporate speech debate

Apr 20, 2011

The debate over the constitutionality of regulating corporate speech took a significant turn in the U.S. Supreme Court's Citizens United decision, but it's an issue that almost certainly won't die down in the aftermath of ...

Feds: Woman illegally fired over Facebook remarks

Nov 09, 2010

(AP) -- A Connecticut woman who was fired after she posted disparaging remarks about her boss on Facebook has prompted a first-of-its-kind legal case by federal authorities who say her comments are protected speech under ...

Fla. judges, lawyers must 'unfriend' on Facebook

Dec 12, 2009

(AP) -- Florida's judges and lawyers should no longer "friend" each other on Facebook, the popular social networking site, according to a ruling from the state's Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee.

Recommended for you

UN moves to strengthen digital privacy (Update)

21 hours ago

The United Nations on Tuesday adopted a resolution on protecting digital privacy that for the first time urged governments to offer redress to citizens targeted by mass surveillance.

Spotify turns up volume as losses fall

21 hours ago

The world's biggest music streaming service, Spotify, announced Tuesday its revenue grew by 74 percent in 2013 while net losses shrank by one third, in a year of spectacular expansion.

Virtual money and user's identity

Nov 25, 2014

Bitcoin is the new money: minted and exchanged on the Internet. Faster and cheaper than a bank, the service is attracting attention from all over the world. But a big question remains: are the transactions ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

jonnyboy
1 / 5 (1) May 04, 2012
appeal this hick's ruling now!

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.