UK Commission Explains That Public Tweets Are Public

from the in-case-you-were-wondering dept

Apparently, a woman in the UK didn’t seem to realize that her Twitter account was public. After finding out some of her Twitter messages were picked up and mentioned in some newspapers, she complained that this was a violation of her privacy rights. This resulted in a case before the Press Complaints Commission, who explained that information that you put out publicly is not private info. Thanks for clearing that up. Public info is public. Good to know.

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Comments on “UK Commission Explains That Public Tweets Are Public”

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34 Comments
Laurel L. Russwurm (profile) says:

it's all relative

Yes, it sounds funny when you understand that Twitter is a public forum. The thing to remember is that most of the people in the world are not aware that it is a public forum.

People sit in their private homes and type words on their computers for their friends to read. The same way people not so long ago typed letters that they put into envelopes, stamped and dropped in a mailbox. Just because many people use computers is no guarantee they understand them.

Rose M. Welch (profile) says:

Re: it's all relative

The thing to remember is that most of the people in the world are not aware that it is a public forum.

The thing to remember is that everyone who joins Twitter has an obligation to know what it is. I mean, they even have an option to make their posts private. What more do you want? A Twitter employee to come to your home and explain it to you?

Wolfger (profile) says:

Re: Re:

That’s absolutely wrong, Christopher. The tweet is public, your names (screen name and user name) are a part of every tweet. The time it was posted is fuzzy… you see “x minutes/hours/days ago” instead of a timestamp. Of course, if it says “4 minutes ago”, you know exactly when.

example, off a random hashtag search:
screen name: sl33stak
user name: Jamie A MacDonald
@TechCrunch I prefer MY #Kickstarter project of #Detroit http://kck.st/e93ANp Well..If you’re into #Photography anyways.
7 minutes ago via Echofon

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

yeahbut it is not quite that simple
(from https://twitter.com/tos)
You retain your rights to any Content you submit, post or display on or through the Services. By submitting, posting or displaying Content on or through the Services, you grant us a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free license (with the right to sublicense) to use, copy, reproduce, process, adapt, modify, publish, transmit, display and distribute such Content in any and all media or distribution methods (now known or later developed).

You agree that this license includes the right for Twitter to make such Content available to other companies, organizations or individuals who partner with Twitter for the syndication, broadcast, distribution or publication of such Content on other media and services, subject to our terms and conditions for such Content use.

Such additional uses by Twitter, or other companies, organizations or individuals who partner with Twitter, may be made with no compensation paid to you with respect to the Content that you submit, post, transmit or otherwise make available through the Services.

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