slfisher 0 Posting Whiz

As predicted, a number of cyberbullying laws were put into effect after the suicide of Megan Meier last fall, which left prosecutors unable to charge the Missouri woman who created a fake MySpace person to mock the 13-year-old girl with anything other than violating MySpace's terms of service.

Not surprisingly, Missouri was one of the states, and now Elizabeth Thrasher has been the first person charged with felony cyberbullying, for allegedly posting photos and personal information of a teenage girl on the "Casual Encounters" section of Craigslist

According to a story by the Associated Press, the victim is the 17-year-old daughter of Thrasher's ex-husband's girlfriend.

Thrasher's Craigslist posting included the teen's picture, employer, e-mail address, and cell phone number. The girl, who has not been named, received calls, e-mails, text messages, and pornographic photos to her cell phone, and contacted police.

Thrasher, who is currently out on a $10,000 bond, could face up to four years in state prison, or up to a year in county jail, and a $5,000 fine.

An editorial in the Los Angeles Times called the arrest, and the law on which it was based, an overreaction. "t seems absurd that Thrasher faces up to four years in state prison for committing the online equivalent of writing "For a good time, call ... " in a well-used bathroom stall," the Times said. "The problem is with prosecutors who think that transgressions are automatically magnified if they occur in cyberspace."

An attempt is also being made to make cyberbullying a crime on the Federal level, the LA Times wrote, though HR 1966 has been languishing since April. That bill "is so shoddy that I just wonder why this happened," wrote constitutional scholar Eugene Volokh in his blog, listing a number of examples that could become illegal should that law pass.