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Be careful about what you post on Twitter

Watching what you say online has started to become increasingly important as social media sites like Twitter come under more public scrutiny.

In the not too distant past, you could make a flippant remark and often get away with it, but now Twitter allows you to voice your opinions in a very open public way –and this makes it even more important to think carefully about what you say before you commit it to Twitter or any other social media sites.

Before Twitter,  there were few occasions where 140 characters could get you into trouble in such a public way.

But two Olympic athletes  learned the hard way that they needed to think before tweeting.

The first casualty was Greek triple jumper Voula Papachristou, whose offensive tweet about African immigrants got her excluded from the Olympic games.

More recently, this week a Swiss soccer player was banned from the Olympics following his offensive tweets after being defeated by South Korea on Sunday.

The Olympics has highlighted how one comment can cause a lot of hurt almost instantaneously.
Consider the case of Olympic diver Tom Daley, who suffered abuse on Twitter over his performance at the games. Comments from Twitter users accusing him of letting his deceased father down have sparked outrage.

Questions are now being raised about what power the police have in cases involving abuse and Twitter? What can be done to prevent this type of dialogue ending up being broadcast via social media?

Posted by Chloe Vaughan