Despite the fact that many treat it as their personal diary, there are definitely limits about what one should or should not post on Facebook. Kimberly Ellis is living proof that there are things to not tell the world about, as she blabbed on the site things about a trial on which she was serving as a juror. For telling the world via Facebook her thoughts on the slow pace of the trial, she in fact ended up causing a mistrial and becoming our official “Idiotic Juror of the Week.”
Things to write on Facebook include details about your pet pig, your dinner adventure, comments on how well you are doing on Candy Crush, smiley faces when you see a cute kitten or dog wearing a costume, and other similar matters. Things to never write include “LOL” (seriously, retire it forever – it is beaten to death…are you actually laughing out loud?) and any thoughts you might have about a trial while serving on the jury.
She posted that “Everything about this process is inefficient. I’m trying to remain positive and centered but, truthfully, I’m dying from boredom.” She knew better, or should have, not to write that. Even worse was “God help me. The other jurors don’t trust the police and want to outright dismiss the confessions as well as the majority of the rest of the evidence. Tomorrow is going to be a very difficult day.”
For her lapse in judgment, Kimberly has been fined $1000 and found in contempt of court. She’s also clearly in contempt of Mark Zuckerberg too – or perhaps she’s just so in love with him and his code that she couldn’t resist.
Her mea culpa? “I continued my personal life as if I was not there to judge a trial. It was my first time as a juror, and I was naive.” Naïve? If we would ever say “LOL” (which we never would, as per the above), this might be the perfect time. Being on a jury is serious business, as lots of resources are being used.
The Judge who fined Kimberly said “We had an interpreter in that case. We have the court reporter, we have the clerk, and everybody else associated with the case and including the district attorney’s time and effort and defense counsel.” The Judge might have been forgiven for adding “OMG” as well.