Politics & Government

Lawmaker withdraws ‘car wrecks on Facebook’ bill

State Rep. John Carney, R-Campbellsville.
State Rep. John Carney, R-Campbellsville. Photo provided by Legislative Research Commission

State Rep. John “Bam” Carney, R-Campbellsville, said he wanted to get people talking by filing a bill to prohibit witnesses to a dangerous event, such as a car crash, from posting about it on the Internet for at least an hour, or face fines up to $100.

Mission accomplished. After two days of an angry backlash online — TechDirt.com called it a “dumb idea with implausible logistics” — Carney said Thursday that he’s withdrawing House Bill 170.

“In this day of the ease of using social media, people can quickly share news of tragic events they witness and, far too often, loved ones may learn of these via Facebook or Twitter before being notified by the authorities,” Carney said in a prepared statement.

“My intent in filing this bill was not to create a tedious new law, but rather to draw attention to and begin conversation about the subject,” he said. “With the media attention of the last couple of days, I believe that goal has been accomplished, and I am now happy to withdraw the bill.”