QUOTE said:A new Tennessee law makes it a crime to "transmit or display an image" online that is likely to "frighten, intimidate or cause emotional distress" to someone who sees it. Violations can get you almost a year in jail time or up to $2500 in fines.
Tennessee law already made it a crime to make phone calls, send emails, or otherwise communicate directly with someone in a manner the sender "reasonably should know" would "cause emotional distress" to the recipient. If the communciation lacked a "legitimate purpose," the sender faced jail time.
The new legislation adds images to the list of communications that can trigger criminal liability. But for image postings, the "emotionally distressed" individual need not be the intended recipient. Anyone who sees the image is a potential victim. If a court decides you "should have known" that an image you posted would be upsetting to someone who sees it, you could face months in prison and thousands of dollars in fines.
Some sites are reporting this with fear, but from reading this article and the relation with early laws it looks like this is an effort to combat serious trolling. I'm not talking "Sony copies everything" trolling, I'm talking the kind of trolling where people will mail girls images of mutilated kittens and people go and spam-post images of mutilated penises on forums. Mods everywhere have to deal with this crap, so many users don't even know it happens, but I've seen enough of it, and it can be pretty damn disturbing.
This law looks like an attempt to make that kind of trolling illegal, and I welcome it if it'll be proven that it's just for things that are intended as harmful... but from the wording of the article it seems this latest one is too vague and open for abuse.