Though the statue of Ted Rogers in front of the Rogers center in Toronto may not be universally adored, you still can’t go around threatening it.
That is what Kitchener, Ont. resident Nicholas Karshoum found when he tweeted he was going to throw the statue into Lake Ontario if Jose Bautista wasn’t given a new contract. Although one must question how that could be accomplished, given that it weighs in at a hefty 792 pounds.
The whole kerfuffle with the tweet centered on Karshoum’s anger at the Rogers-owned Blue Jays for not yet having signed Bautista, who is demanding a new contract worth $150 million over five years.
(Screen grab from Twitter)
Rogers got wind of the tweet, alerted police, who then got the cybercrimes unit involved, and consequently the young man received a visit from Waterloo, Ont. police.
A puzzled Karshoum was told by police that they were there because he threatened Mr. Rogers’ statue and that he needed to refrain from making online threats against private property. The consequences of making such threats could be jail time.
Karshoum realized what he said was foolish and admitted, “it is not the only dumb thing I’ve said on the Internet,” but didn’t think it should have gotten the attention it ended up getting. He told CBC News: “I can see how it was taken legitimately, but I definitely don't think it should have been.”
Unfortunately for Karshoum and other Internet commenters, there may be legal consequences or at least a police visit for those who think they can say whatever they want over social media – especially if threats are involved.
The Criminal Code of Canada has a section called “uttering threats,” which basically says that it is an offence to threaten someone to “burn, destroy or damage real or personal property”
So please think before you tweet!