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Woman Subject to Protective Order Arrested for Facebook 'Poke'

On June 10, a court issued a protective order prohibiting Shannon D. Jackson of Hendersonville, Tenn., from "telephoning, contacting or otherwise communicating with" another Hendersonville woman, either "directly or indirectly." On Friday, Sept. 25, Jackson was "extremely shocked" when police arrested her for allegedly violating the order. Authorities in Hendersonville say that Jackson was arrested for “poking” the other woman on Facebook.

Facebook-poke As characterized in the Hendersonville Star News, "poking is a feature unique to Facebook that conveys no other message but informing a user they have been 'poked' by another user." Jackson was reportedly transported to Sumner County Jail, and bond was set at $1,500. Jackson is scheduled to appear in court later this month.

Jackson's lawyer, Lawren Lassiter, told ABC News that the only evidence she is aware of is a printed screen-grab of the victim's Facebook page. "I'm trying to get my hands on some Facebook documentation so we can better assess the situation," she said.

Ryan Calo, a residential fellow at Stanford Law School's Center for Internet & Society, agreed that a "poke" is a form of communication that can be restricted by a protective order. "A poke is a very deliberate action," he said. "You have to select the person and say, 'this is what I want to do.'"

Posted by Bruce Carton on October 14, 2009 at 02:55 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)


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