The Supreme Court launched its twitter feed today, and is proving to be popular, with 2,782 followers by mid-afternoon. Those hoping for live updates of what the justices are having for breakfast may be a little disappointed; the Supreme Court  twitter policy states that:

You can expect 2-3 tweets a week covering the cases, judgments, and corporate announcements of the Supreme Court.”

There was a flurry of tweets this morning though, as the UKSC used the feed to tweet live from the swearing in of Lord Reed. Lord Reed’s appointment follows the death of Lord Rodger last year and continues the tradition that two of the court’s justices have experience of the Scottish legal system. The Supreme Court now has its full complement of twelve justices.

The UKSC Twitter Policy also contained some other interesting titbits of information including:

The Court’s communications team is bound by the Civil Service Code, and cannot engage on issues of party politics. You should also be aware that the Court cannot offer legal advice and we will not enter into discussion about published judgments.”

It seems doubtful that this will prevent individual litigants from having a go anyway. Also worth noting is that:

Sending messages to our Twitter feed will not be considered as contacting the Supreme Court for any official purpose”

The policy currently says that the  Court will not accept Freedom of Information requests via twitter, but they have now said that they will (via twitter). For an interesting post of the genuine viability of making an FOI request via twitter then this piece by FOI Man is worth reading.

For those disappointed not to be amongst the 30 tweeters currently being followed by the Supreme Court Twitter Feed:

If you follow @UKSupremecourt, we will not automatically follow you back. This avoids us having to spend time dealing with spam accounts, and helps keep discussions open by limiting the use of Direct Messages. @UKSupremecourt will follow organisations of relevance to it and may follow individuals where appropriate. We will cease to follow accounts we believe are malicious or spam.”

But if you are amongst the esteemed few being followed then bear in mind that:

“The fact that we follow a Twitter account does not imply endorsement of any kind by the UK Supreme Court.”

This is a pity, as the idea of being able to say that you hold a UKSC tweet warrant was rather appealing.*

* For a full list of genuine warrants (i.e. those granted by the royal family) please see the following list. The UKSC blog was delighted to learn that Calders and Grandidge hold the royal warrant for preserved timber fencing and Corgi Hosiery is the proud supplier of royal socks.