The Sunday Herald and the Sun have by their actions shown (if it were not already apparent) the madness of super injunctions taken out by the rich and powerful.

Yesterday the Sunday Herald, a Scottish newspaper with only a very small reputation in the wider United Kingdom, decided to take the plunge and published a thinly disguised picture of the premier league footballer who is said to have taken out a super injunction that prevents the media from revealing his alleged affair with Big Brother contestant Imogen Thomas.

The regional newspaper all of a sudden became of national interest, even to the extent that its website has been down for large chunks of today and yesterday, presumably because its system cannot cope with the vast numbers of extra visitors hoping to see who the footballer is.

The decision to publish the photo appears to be based on the legal view that super injunctions only apply in England. What is completely absurd though is that while English newspapers cannot publish the name of the footballer, it already seems that large numbers of the population already know what the Sunday Herald decided to publish, thanks to websites like Twitter.

British Prime Minister David Cameron said today that "even he" knew who the footballer is, while an online poll taken by the Daily Mail showed that 70 per cent of respondents also knew the identity of the mystery player.

It is very likely that the reader of this article knows exactly who is being discussed, despite the fact that the writer cannot name the player. It's bizarrely like the world of Harry Potter where one cannot mention the evil Lord Voldemort but must refer to him as "You Know Who".

Something must be wrong when it is considered a brave editorial decision to publish a story everyone already knows about.

This gagging of the press, as well as being disturbing in a supposedly free society, is clearly absurd when everyone who wants to know does know thanks to new media and even foreign traditional media.

The absurdities continued today when the tabloid Sun newspaper attempted in court to overturn the injunction and name "You Know Who" just as media minnow the Sunday Herald did.

The court ruled however that the Sun may not name the player involved, thus upholding a mad status quo where English newspapers cannot report on stories which are fast becoming common knowledge.

As well as being absurd and ineffective (at keeping secrets that is) super injunctions can be highly damaging, in that while they may protect those who take them, they leave others vulnerable.

While the media cannot say who took out an injunction, it is also difficult to say who did not take out an injunction. In other words innocent people can become suspects because the real guilty parties are protected.

During the furore about Jemima Khan and Jeremy Clarkson, Ms Khan pointed out that she could not have taken out an injunction to prevent photos of her and Mr Clarkson coming out, as Twitter users claimed, because if she had no one could name her.

It's still not entirely clear if those named on Twitter, including "You Know Who" are those who took out injunctions because of alleged affairs and the like. Hence it could be that innocent people are wrongly being blamed for the wrongdoing of others as a result of these injunctions.

Would it not be better to have an open and free press once again and let the light of day shine on the story? Those who are being wrongly accused would be cleared and the allegedly adulterous footballer would endure a week of bad headlines before everyone forgot about it and went back to praising him as a footballing hero, just as they did for... Oh that was close.

Update: "You Know Who" has just been named in Parliament, despite this the name is still not being reported in most media outlets. Can the press no longer report on the goings on of Parliament thanks to injunctions?