London, Oct 18: Existing laws may not be able to control offensive or anti-social behaviour on social networking sites likes Facebook and Twitter, a British lawmaker has said.
Director of Public Prosecutions Keir Starmer pointed out that the existing legislation usually invoked in prosecutions over comments on social networks had been designed with different purposes in mind.
The current acts, he said, were written to control telephones and public places.
According to the Telegraph, the DPP said it was “a perfectly respectable position to take” to say that prosecutors should not apply them to social media and look instead to parliament for new guidance.
In the short term, Starmer said he could make all decisions on the prosecution of offensive behaviour on Facebook centrally, in the same way that his office currently deals with decisions on prosecutions over assisted suicide.
According to the paper, in the recent weeks a number of people have been investigated by the police after they had posted offensive and abusive messages online.
Chief police officers are becoming increasingly concerned at the volume of cases emerging and fear they could be inundated with demands to investigate trivial matters better dealt with by the websites themselves, the report added. (ANI)