Either Twitter trolls are getting more and more brazen in their attacks on public figures, or public figures know that they can use awful comments as a lightning rod to get douchebags arrested and laws changed. That’s what NRL footballer Robbie Farah has done, taking an attack on him straight to Prime Minister Julia Gillard, urging her to change online harassment laws after a troll got in touch to make some distasteful comments about his late mother.
Image: Mark Kolbe/Getty Images
The offensive tweet that sparked Farah’s tirade, according to The Sydney Morning Herald, took aim at his late mother who lost a battle to pancreatic cancer earlier in the year.
First, Farah retweeted the offensive material, then he contacted Police to report the user before asking PM Gillard for a favour.
Here’s how Farah’s tweets went down after the trolling:
We all need to make a stand and get these scums off twitter. The laws are piss weak and people should be accountable for their comments 7:24pm, 9 Sep 12
we need @JuliaGillard to take some action and change these soft laws.people need to be accountable for their comments. #makeastand 7:36pm, 9 Sep 2012
And finally, NSW Premier (and a fan of the team Farah plays for) Barry O’Farrell got in touch to pledge his support:
We’ll be following to see if this footballer’s pleas to the PM lead to any sort of reform. In the meantime, don’t be a douchebag on the internet. To anyone.
Do social media trolls deserve jail time?