WHAT is happening at Blackpool should be a warning to sports fans across the land who use social media.

This week, the owners of the Championship’s bottom club announced they were suing a supporters’ website over defamatory comments.

In legal papers served on the internet forum, Owen and Karl Oyston are seeking £150,000 in damages relating to six alleged derogatory remarks that were posted on the online platform.

While this may look like an over-reaction to the casual observer, the only thing I am surprised about is that it has taken this long for a club to take a stance.

I do not know the specifics of the comments but if they are perceived to be libellous then the Blackpool owners have every right to act.

In the modern age of social media, online forums are a way for supporters to chew over the talking points at their club.

But they are also incredibly difficult to police given the often anonymous nature of contributors.

This becomes an issue when fans overstep the mark, which some do, and are alleged to have done at Blackpool.

There have been occasions in the past when Worcester City’s own “banter board” has flown dangerously close to the wind.

It seems there is a misconception that you can say what you want online without consequence. If you said it in public, it would be slander.

Some fans seem unable to grasp that, believing the internet to be some kind of lawless void, which it isn’t.

I think there is a place for such platforms but they have to be used responsibly.

Otherwise, don’t be surprised if people take action.