Sam Riddle, a political consultant in Michigan, went on trial on charges of public corruption and blasted his defense attorney while the jury was out deliberating.
Steve Keefer, on trial for public corruption in Pittsburgh, took his frustration with the state's investigation out by tweeting during trial.
So what's the harm, you ask? Statements made by a party to a suit are admissible, even if the party who made the statement doesn't testify, because the statements aren't considered hearsay. In Mr. Riddle's case it may not matter because he waited until the jury took the case before posting updates -- but should one of the jurors go snooping around the internet...
Mr. Keefer's updates are far more troubling, however, because he began posting updates on Facebook and Twitter during the trial. Any comments he made could be introduced into evidence by the state if he made any harmful admissions.
The danger, of course, becomes greater in complicated multi-day trials when jurors have time to do a little "research" on the side.