THE IRISH GOVERNMENT has no specific plans to follow the UK’s crackdown on so-called online trolls.
Earlier this week, proposed changes to the Defamation Bill in the UK which would give victims of anonymous abuse the power to identify Internet trolls were revealed.
The Department of Justice and Equality told TheJournal.ie that it is “aware of the UK intentions” but has no specific comment to offer “until adequate consideration has been given to the relevant proposals”.
The changes to the UK’s Defamation Bill could give people who operate websites a defence against libel. That defence would centre on them identifying the person/s behind the alleged defamation when asked by a complainant.
Defamation in Ireland, whether online, in print or broadcast, is covered by the Defamation Act 2009. However, the Justice Department also noted that certain acts can be categorised as harassment which is a criminal offence under the Non-Fatal Offences Against the person Act 1997.
-Additional reporting by Christine Bohan