Councilor ordered by judge to tweet court ruling

Pamplona politician made to post Twitter message after insulting cancer-stricken colleague

A former councilor in the northern city of Pamplona, Ana Pineda, has become one of the first people in Spain to be ordered to post a message on social networking site Twitter. The text must read: “I am publishing this tweet in compliance with the sentence [...], which states that the tweets I sent on 18-3-11 violated the honor of Uxue Barkos.”

The case dates back to March of last year, when Barkos, also a councilor in Pamplona, returned to work after being treated for breast cancer. Her arrival sparked media interest, and saw journalists leave a council session to photograph and interview her.

That was when Pineda published the offending comments on Twitter: “Uxue Barcos makes her return in the eye of the media to draw attention away from [her party’s] proposal against the exploitation of women in the press.” A number of similar tweets followed, all suggesting she was taking advantage of her illness. The judge ruled that Pineda had violated Barkos’ honor, because she was issuing “a value judgment on the councilor in the sense that she was making use of the cancer from which she was suffering for political and party ends.”

However, Pineda’s profile on Twitter is currently set to private, meaning that only the 41 other users who follow her on the social networking site will be able to see the message that the judge ordered to be posted.