Controversial new measures are being introduced which permit corporal punishment to be used on people who say the word hashtag out loud.
A recent Act of Parliament states that, “Physical pain is the only way to make these people appreciate just how annoying they are. If they associate the word with agony then they might stop using it.”
The first person to be found guilty of verbal hashtagging is Godalming resident Simon Williams, 33. During an incident at a restaurant, he exclaimed, “Hashtag corked!” after tasting the wine.
An eyewitness said, “I was on a nearby table but I think everyone in the restaurant heard the offending phrase. There were a lot of winces and groans. There was a sort of horrible tension in the room afterwards.
“I don’t think many people are aware of the new law – I know I wasn’t. But luckily the maître d’ had the presence of mind to phone the police immediately.”
After being sentenced Mr Williams was flogged on Godalming Bandstand in front of a large crowd primarily there to watch a Music in the Park event.
A huge cheer went up with each lash of the whip, suggesting the new legislation is popular with the public.
However, there are already doubts about just how effective the punishment will be. During his flogging Mr Williams was heard to shout, “Hashtag ouch!” and “Hashtag thisisbarbaric!” both of which subsequently trended on Twitter.