Monday, December 5

Justice forces a youtuber to upload a video reading his conviction for insulting the influencer ‘Wismichu’

A court in Barcelona has issued a pioneering sentence that forces a youtuber to read on his channel his conviction for insulting another youtuber, ‘Wismichu’, in several videos. The judge understands that the youtuber ‘NauterPlay’ violated the honor of ‘Wismichu’ by referring to him in several videos as “fool, coward, piece of shit, bastard” and, in addition to forcing him to pay compensation of 1,500 euros, they force him to record a video reading his sentence “with a clear and intelligible narration” and upload it to his YouTube channel for three months. It is, according to the lawyer David Bravo who has represented the plaintiff, a pioneering ruling in our country: “It is a novelty in jurisprudence.”

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It was the youtuber ‘Wismichu’, who has more than nine million subscribers, who brought to justice the insults he received between 2019 and 2020 from another youtuber, called ‘NauterPlay’, who currently has more than 300,000 followers on the platform. In his videos, more than a dozen, under titles like “Wismichu is finished” or “What you didn’t know about Wismichu” referred to the youtuber with insults like “imbecile, pig, garbage, coward, piece of shit, henpecked” , among others.

The magistrate of Court 48 of Barcelona understands that these insults are not protected by freedom of expression or protected by the fame of the YouTuber or his more or less controversial character. Her words, says the sentence, are “manifestly offensive and outrageous” and affected the honor of ‘Wismichu’. “Neither the public nature of the people who litigate nor the tone used in the medium in which the expressions are poured allow insults of this type to be protected,” explains the resolution that is still appealable.

Nor does it accept the defendant’s argument that the insults were directed at the character represented by the youtuber ‘Wismichu’ and not at the person behind it. “There are no different identities, ‘Wismichu’ is the alias that the actor uses on YouTube and other social channels to develop his professional activity,” explains the ruling, which sets compensation at 1,500 euros. The judge takes into account that ‘Wismichu’ himself uses this type of “insults and contempt” against other people and groups to modulate the compensation he had requested.

The novel part of this sentence comes in the form of executing the sentence. The magistrate partially accepts the request of the plaintiff and his lawyer David Bravo and forces the youtuber ‘NauterPlay’ to upload a video to his channel in which he appears reading the conviction in a “clear and intelligible” manner and that video is uploaded during at least three months. She also forces the removal of videos considered offensive from his channel to “guarantee the cessation of the disturbance in the honor of the actor.”

Banned from YouTube

In recent years, the Spanish courts and tribunals have been adapting their rulings and sentences to the field in which crimes can also be committed or the rights of others violated: social networks. It was the same lawyer, David Bravo, who was behind the first lawsuit that ended with a conviction to tweet: Luis Pineda, convicted leader of Ausbanc, was forced by the courts to publish on his Twitter account the sentence that convicted him of defaming Rubén Sánchez, general secretary of Facua.

Recently it was the criminal chamber of the Supreme Court that decided that a restraining order can also be transferred to a social network like YouTube. The judges confirmed last May a sentence of 15 months in prison for the ‘youtuber’ ReSet for humiliating a Barcelona beggar by giving him cookies filled with toothpaste to eat, but they also imposed a second sentence: the prohibition to return to post videos on this platform for five years.

That resolution, which had a private vote of two magistrates, reasoned that a crime such as the one committed by this ‘youtuber’ had been committed on the internet and, therefore, “is likely to generate the prohibition of re-accessing the social network in which this crime was devised, developed and disclosed”.