Political free speech is protected by the U.S. Constitution — but what about liking someone, some cause, or some candidate on Facebook?
One morning, Deputy Sheriff Ray Carter clicked on a thumbs-up icon at his computer in Hampton Virginia. The problem was that the page was for a candidate challenging his boss, the sheriff. The sheriff didn't like that at all, and after he won re-election, Carter was fired as deputy.
Facebook and the American Civil Liberties Union are now fighting to make the "Like" button a form of protected speech. Marcus Messner is a journalism professor at Virginia Commonwealth University who specializes in social media.