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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
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, I have a query on a facebook post. My neighbour (ex-friend)

Resolved Question:

Hello, I have a query on a facebook post. My neighbour (ex-friend) were throwing balls/other stuff at us (with a baby in the garden). We then said we are not going to return the balls until they agree things will not keep coming back at us. By the way things coming across the fence had been happening for a long time. A community officer stepped in solve the issue and he adviced it is ok not to return the balls/other stuff until a mediation has happened. Balls kept coming back at me and my daughter. I dont know how it could be coincidence that it would come and hit us spot on in a 60 * 27 feet garden unless it is specifically targetted. This made me angry and I posted an indirect facebook comment to stop it from happening and it worked. My question is whether that facebook post can be used against me? The message read like this: Insane neighbors - don't have the courage to talk direct, but keep troubling us with the balls which r hard and not soft.So many times my daughter escaped from those balls and even a bat trying to hit me when I was pregnant and also a shoe. Hard to believe someone cannot have this simple common sense, so must be on purpose surely. I am not returning balls to stop it from becoming missiles coming at us. Unfortunately it's not gold that we can benefit from but just old, dirty balls. People with two faces are the worst and some people get fooled by one face when they have not seen the other.
This neighbour has also been very rude to me in the past and has hurted my self respect a number of times when I am alone at home. I do not have any evidence as to what and how he spoke to me. What is the best course of action I can take against him to get a proper apology of what he has done and also to make sure it does not happen in the future?
He also says he has evidence in the form of videos that we had been using their balls that came across the fence. I dont know what other videos he may posses that invades our privacy. Are these videos legal for them to possess and what can I do to get these videos destroyed and prevent from further intrusion into our privacy?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What specifically are you trying to get an apology for?

Customer:

Hi, I am seeking an apology for his arrogant behaviour when alone at home and throwing the balls at us purposely.

Ben Jones :

Hello, you cannot force this person to issue an apology. In fact no one can do that, whether you go to the police or go to court over this. An apology is a voluntary act and they will only issue it if they wanted to. So whilst there is nothing stopping you from asking them to apologise, you cannot force them to do so. This is also something done directly with them so all you can do is approach them and ask for such an apology – the rest is up to them.

In terms of the alleged videos they have, it depends on what the content of the videos are. If they were taken whilst you were on public property, such as on the street or in parks, etc then there is nothing illegal about this – you have no expectation of privacy there and they can film you if they wanted to. However, if the videos were taken by aiming a camera at your private property, such as your garden then you could be able to take action against your neighbour under the Human Rights Act. You would have to be able to prove that your neighbour was violating your privacy by watching you with his camera, and that his use of the camera could be construed as harassment or voyeurism. To take this further you would need to make a complaint to the local police in the first instance, who might ask him to remove the videos and change any recording habits. However, that is usually as far as you can go – the Data Protection Act would not apply in this case so you cannot for example rely on the Information Commissioner’s Office to assist you and court is not really something you should be considering especially if there is no actual proof that such videos exist.

I hope this clarifies your position? If you could please quickly let me know that would be great, as it is important for us to keep track of customer satisfaction. Thank you

Customer:

Thanks for the response. However the main question about the facebook post I have is still unanswered.

Ben Jones :

There is little that they can do about this post. If this was just a one off comment and it reflects the facts, then even if you made an opinion about it there is little they can do to use that against you in any legal way

Ben Jones :

Hope this clarifies things for you?

Customer:

Yes, thanks!

Customer:

In the future if balls keep coming into our garden, am I obliged to return the balls or is it pretty much my decision to return or not return? Also if I should return, is it my decision on when I can return?

Ben Jones :

you would be legally obliged to return the balls if they ask for them to be returned - they are not your property regardless of whether they have come into your garden or not. You could delay giving them back but that may just antagonise the neighbours further and unlikely to help in resolving this matter.

Ben Jones :

If your original question has been answered I would be grateful if you could please quickly rate my answer - it only takes a second to do and is an important part of our process. I can still answer follow up questions afterwards if needed. Thank you

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Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, I see you have accessed and read my answer to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this? I just need to know whether you need further help or if I can close the question? Thank you