Journoggers: Teachers sue Newspaper Australia

Journalists that raid social networks like Facebook and Twitter, not caring about community, will face a backlash. There is a difference between “exposing the truth” and straight out dirt digging by sourcing content from “open” discussions and taking it out of context to sell advertising. These teachers are suing a newspaper for printing private Facebook photos.

A few months ago, I wrote about journoggersOpens in a new tab. – and tried to highlight the difference between bloggers/twitterers (social network members) vs journalists simply using social media to source stories (not be truly a member), and how they behave differently:

Participating in the online community… or raiding it?

Bloggers use a “negative” story as a jumping off point for them to give advice, of varying expertise/passion/usefulness, to demonstrate their skill and knowledge in a particular subject.  Journoggers simply maximise the distress of the situation. So if you see a post referring to someone being an idiot on Twitter, by tweeting that they hate their client or something, a blogger will usually give “advice” on why social media guidelines are useful, or why transparency is positive or how Gen Z think it’s a fair tweet. Journalists will hold them up for ridicule, expecting comments that are inflammatory (then faking shock when they have nastiness on their site). Set the tone and topic as toxic then shake their head at the great unwashed.

Journalists that blog will escalate the outrage with no education around it. If it bleeds it leads versus what can we learn from this.

NOTE: not all journalists, just those sourcing stories from Twitter and Facebook to sell newspapers and/or advertising.

Well yesterday, the Warwick Daily News journalists, Eloise Handley And Casandra Garvey,  reported ROLE MODELS DISGUST KIDS:Opens in a new tab.

WARWICK State High School students have said they were “disgusted” but not surprised when sexy photos of two teachers appeared on social networking site Facebook, while Education Queensland has told the pair to clean up their internet imagery while investigations continue.

Yesterday the Daily News revealed images on English department head Ann Kerr’s Facebook profile which depicted and named her and fellow English and IT teacher Helen Casey wearing mock school uniforms with fishnet stockings, perched on a bathroom vanity in sexually suggestive positions.

Their lawyers claim the pictures were taken from Facebook, despite the fact the pictures were restricted to friends.


Some former students who graduated from the school in 2009 were able to access the images, which were available to view to Facebook friends of either teacher.

The teachers are now suing (from NewsOpens in a new tab.):

But in a world first, the Queensland teachers have launched defamation action against theWarwick Daily News for allegedly misusing the social networking site.

Their lawyers claim the pictures were taken from Facebook, despite the fact the pictures were restricted to friends.

This should be interesting.

At the end of the day though, even with a private gated accounts, they must be saying themselves… ‘I wish I could have those former students in front of me just for one minute…GRRRR.”  Newspapers will argue two points – one point is “should teachers have a hot ‘n dirty private life?” and the second point is “…and should the students know about it?”. Facebook used to have a clause that people couldn’t take content and publish it elsewhere but I don’t think they do anymore… Shame.

Laurel Papworth

Named by Forbes™ Magazine in the Top 50 Social Media Influencers globally, named Head of Industry, Social Media (Marketing Magazine™) and in the Power150 Media bloggers (AdAge™). CERT IV Training and Assessment certified trainer (Diplomas and Certificates etc) Adult Education. Laurel has manager Facebook Pages for Junior Masterchef, Idol, Big Brother etc. and have consulted on private online communities for banks Westpac, not for profits UNHCR & governments in SE Asia. Lecturer, social media, University of Sydney for 10 years and Laurel has 11,000 online students. Laurel Papworth personally connects to 6 million followers online and has taught around 100,000 people in the last 10 years how to be social media managers.

11 thoughts on “Journoggers: Teachers sue Newspaper Australia

  1. Journoggers: Teachers sue Newspaper Australia: Journalists that raid social networks like Facebook and Twitter, no… http://bit.ly/9rLflm

  2. an interesting post from @silkcharm … "journoggers: teachers sue newspaper australia" http://bit.ly/cXMtH8

  3. RT @SilkCharm: Journoggers: Teachers sue Newspaper in Australia over publishing Facebook photos http://bit.ly/96ReRH World first apparently? #socialmedia

  4. “Facebook used to have a clause that people couldn’t take content and publish it elsewhere but I don’t think they do anymore… Shame”

    And what if it did have such a clause? What is Facebook going to do? Facebook isn’t the law. All that Facebook would have open to it would be to ban the account which was used to provide the pictures for that external publishing.

    What what happen next? The person who got banned would open a new account.

    I’m doing some research on something and have found the ease with which you can become a friend of a friend of someone of interest is simply astounding. Once you’re in that circle, it is very easy to befriend the person of interest — then you have access to pictures, updates and the rest.

    This is an law enforcement officer/ reporter / investigator’s dream come true. (Even without subpoena, the amount of information which can be gathered is staggering.)

  5. Like jenzpeace, I am also interested to see what will happen. I hope you update us on that. Thanks for sharing. There will always be people who will take advantage of any situation to get noticed.

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