Three French Twitter users were fined this week for sending tweets that included homophobic hashtags. It’s the first time a French court has handed out convictions for homophobic abuse on Twitter.
The convictions date back to offences committed in 2013 when several homophobic hashtags appeared on Twitter in France, including “Gays must die because…”, (#Lesgaysdoiventdisparaîtrecar).
The three who were convicted in the Paris court this week posted tweets using the hashtag “let’s burn the gays on…” (#brûlonslesgayssurdu).
The case against the three had been brought by French charity Comité Idaho, which organizes the International Day Against Homophobia in France.
It had filed a complaint against the users for inciting hatred and violence on the basis of sexual orientation.
The punishments handed down however were fairly light – one was fined €300 while the other two were forced to pay €500 – given the maximum punishment is up to a year in prison and a €45,000 fine.
Although all three were forced to pay the same amount to Comité Idaho, which welcomed the ruling this week.