Aussies Show Facebook Can Become Dangerous Kangaroo Court

Following the devastating bush fires in Victoria, Australia, an alleged arsonist has come under fire from Facebook users that have threatened even lynching. The legal system will prosecute him but the kangaroo court being held on Facebook could have its own legal problems, according to ABC News.

"The creators of internet groups calling for the torture of the man accused of lighting one of the deadly Victorian bushfires could face prosecution for breaching a court order.

Members of the networking site, Facebook, have created groups calling for 39-year-old Brendan Sokaluk to be "burnt at the stake" after he was charged with arson causing death.

The Facebook groups contain photographs of Sokaluk, which is in breach of a suppression order," ABC News reported.

This is a great example of how social media can go really wrong, and with the ability to spread information quickly it can cause problems that legal authorities may not be able to react to quickly enough.

About the author

Frank Watson has been involved with the Web since it started. For the past five years, he headed SEM for FXCM -- at one time one of the top 25 spenders with AdWords. He has worked with most of the major analytics companies and pioneered the ability to tie online marketing with offline conversion.

He has now started his own marketing agency, Kangamurra Media. This new venture will keep him busy when he is not editing the Search Engine Watch forums, blogging at a number of authoritative sites, and developing some interesting online community sites.

He was one of the first 100 AdWords Professionals, a Yahoo and Overture Ambassador, and a member or mod of many of the industry forums. He is also on the Click Quality Council and has worked hard to diminish click fraud.