Paul Chambers has appeared in court to appeal his conviction in what has been dubbed the ‘Twitter Joke Trial’, independent.co.uk reports.
In January 2010, following a bout of heavy snow, Robin Hood Airport posted long delays and cancellations. Chambers, who was due to fly from the airport shortly afterwards, tweeted the message: “Cr*p! Robin Hood Airport is closed. You’ve got a week and a bit to get your sh*t together, otherwise I’m blowing the airport sky high.”
His message, which was meant as a joke, prompted concern among airport staff who reported it to the police. Chambers was charged and the case went to court the following November. Crown Court Judge Jacqueline Davies, however, said the message was “clearly menacing” and so sentenced him to a £1,000 fine.
Today (27th), Chambers headed back to court in order to appeal the decision joined by supporters of the cause, Stephen Fry and Al Murray. The comedians have supported Chambers throughout the trial and Fry even joined hundreds of others in re-tweeting the original message.
Cooper, along with his representatives, John Cooper QC and Sarah Przybylska, told the court how the message was facetious and a parody, with the outcome of the courts being likened to using “a steamroller to crack a nut”.
They have argued also that the case is not solely about the one tweet in particular but about the censorship of social media content as a whole – as well as the issue of freedom of speech online.
The appeal has now been delivered, although it could be weeks before a verdict is passed down, guardian.co.uk reports.