Social media is often where a story breaks for the first time. In times of crisis, news channels often deliver information as it is reported by users on Twitter and other networks. While these sources are rarely used as “confirmed” sources by the media, what is said by Twitter and other social media users can cloud a story.
A recent example of social media users being among the first to report a story is the motorcycle accident of rapper Fetty Wap. Fetty Wap was reportedly injured and transported to a hospital in New Jersey after he collided with a car while he was on the motorcycle. Details about the accident, which first came in from Twitter users on or near the scene, were scant.
According to later reports from news channels, the rapper may have tried to pass or move around another vehicle when he was struck by a third vehicle. Official reports were not available even as news channels began to break the story based almost solely on Twitter feeds.
While there aren’t a lot of details about who might have been at fault in the Fetty Wap accident, the incident illustrates an important point about the role of the Internet in accidents. After an accident, individuals may be in shock or physically injured. They might not be in the right frame of mind to fully protect their interests. Posting on social media during this time is not always a good idea, and if you end up filing a liability lawsuit regarding the accident later, what you say on social media might come into play.
You can’t stop others from commenting or posting, but you can control what you say and do after an accident. Before talking about fault and liability online, consider seeking some professional advice about any possible lawsuit.
Source: International Business Times, “Rapper Fetty Wap Reportedly Hospitalized Following Motorcycle Accident In Paterson, New Jersey,” Minyvonne Burke, Sep. 26, 2015