The framers of the United States Constitution and those who developed the early common law were no strangers to printed media. They could not, however, have anticipated the widespread ability of average people to communicate instantaneously with large audiences via platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Despite this new technology, courts have primarily relied on pre-social media precedent, rules of law, and the Constitution for guidance when confronted with civil and criminal social media misconduct. On the one hand, relying on existing law is a good thing; it reaffirms the judiciary's commitment to precedent and stare decisis. On the other hand, relying on precedent-adopted pre-social media prevents courts from furthering social media norms.
Leslie Y. Garfield Tenzer,
Social Media and the Common Law,
88 Brook. L. Rev.
Available at: https://brooklynworks.brooklaw.edu/blr/vol88/iss1/5