A MOTION to control the way video recordings of Ledbury Town Council meetings are edited by the general public, for posts on social media, has been thrown out.
One town councillor said that such restrictions would be "censorship" and others said the protocol would be "unenforceable".
Cllr Andrew Harrison proposed the motion, which was debated at last week's full town council meeting in Ledbury Methodist Church.
Loading article content
Cllr Harrison said the motion had wording similar to that used by other councils.
The motion read: "The council asks those recording proceedings not to edit the film or recording in a way that could lead to misinterpretation of the proceedings, or infringe the core values of the council.
"This includes refraining from editing an image in a way that may ridicule, or show lack of respect, towards those being filmed for recorded."
Cllr Harrison was concerned that snippets of debate could be edited and presented out of context on social media, and he claimed this had happened recently with a comment made during a council meeting by his partner, the former town councillor, Richard Hadley.
The clip in question had been posted by Kenny Mitchell, the husband of Ledbury Town Council clerk Karen Mitchell, he said.
The motion won the support of Cllr Liz Harvey, a town and county councillor, who said: "If these are words adopted by other councils, we should take them seriously, as two sentences that work for other people. The sense of the sentences is clear. They are not saying don't edit; they are saying don't edit in a malicious or mischievous way."
But Cllr Jayne Roberts said the wording would not generate any extra respect for the town council.
She said: "Whatever we add doesn't entitle us to any more courtesy from anyone. It's a waste of time."
And Cllr Bob Barnes was concerned that the motion could be seen as a form of censorship.
He said: "I myself have been a victim of internet trolls; but we have no control over who films and what they do with it.
"This motion is really talking about censorship, and that is not possible. It's a restriction of the freedom of speech."
Cllr Martin Eager said the scale and manner of the internet made any protocol by the town council, on the use of footage, impossible to enforce.
He said: "Any film footage that goes on the internet can be edited by anyone. We can't enforce it. It's unworkable. I can't see where this is going to go."
Town councillors voted against the motion, but a town council working party will look into the matter further.
Cllr Keith Francis said: "We need a social media policy."