All Apologies: Is Twitter the Modern Day Chalkboard?
Remember when you used to get in trouble in school as a youngster? Remember having to write out a “I will not do _______ again” apology on the blackboard repetitively as punishment for your shenanigans? In case you’re aren’t sure about what I’m referring to, think of the the introduction to The Simpsons television show as it famously makes use of this kind of punishment via Bart Simpson.
Anyway, it appears that, besides being one of the primary methods for communicating on the Internet, Twitter is also serving as a virtual chalkboard for those who find themselves in a position of being legally forced to issue an apology. Just ask Fahmi Fadzil. Fadzil was ordered by a Malaysian court to issue an apology 100 times via his Twitter account after he was found responsible for defaming the Blu Inc Media & Female Magazine.
The trouble began when Fadzil issued a tweet that called out the company in question for the apparent mistreatment of a pregnant employee, one who was also a friend of Fadzil. Although Fadzil quickly tweeted an apology, that didn’t stop such vicious punishment from being handed down by the Malaysian court system. The apology in question is phrased like so:
I’ve DEFAMED Blu Inc Media & Female Magazine. My tweets on their HR Policies are untrue. I retract those words & hereby apologize.”
As of this post, Fadzil is up to his 70th apology, as I’m sure he’s making liberal use of his computer’s copy and paste shortcuts. In case you’re curious, the tweets in question look like so:
70/100 I’ve DEFAMED Blu Inc Media & Female Magazine. My tweets on their HR Policies are untrue. I retract those words & hereby apologize
And now, that the media has gotten its hands on the story, each subsequent apology is followed up with retweets; undoubtedly courtesy of his new fanbase. To wit, when the story broke, Fadzil had in the neighborhood of 4500 followers. That number now stands at 5,311. It wouldn’t be a bit surprising if that number eclipsed 6000 by the end of the day.
In light of Fadzil’s gulag-like sentence, what are some other creative uses of Twitter you can think of beyond the norm? Clearly, the 140-character limit comes into play, but surely there are other uses besides promoting sex tapes from historically Black colleges or living vicariously through the pop culture elite. Let us know what you think in the comments section.