An extraordinary meeting has been called after concerns were raised about town councillors arguing on social media.

Whitehaven Town Council will hold the extraordinary meeting via Zoom on Friday at 6pm.

Councillors will be asked to consider a social media policy to regulate their behaviour online.

It comes after a number of councillors “raised issues regarding the use of social media for council business or for airing disputes.”

Elected members will also have to agree whether they should be required to sign it to state they will comply with it.

Since the town council started holding full meetings online due to the pandemic, a number of pleas were issued for councillors to stop arguing on social media.

Chairman Brian O’Kane said the practice was shedding a bad light on the authority, with some residents calling for the town council to be dissolved.

The draft policy asks councillors to keep comments respectful and informative. It also warns against the dangers of libel claims.

It says: “Publishing untrue statements about a person which is damaging to their reputation is libel and can result in court action and a fine for damages.

“Publication of obscene material is a criminal offence and is subject to a custodial sentence.”

The document also warns councillors against hiding their identity or using false names; presenting themselves in a way that could cause embarrassment to the council; engaging in personal attack; or posting bullying content