Paul Akinnuoye, 20, from Tunbridge Wells in Kent, traded homophobic insults with Jordan Wright, 19, in a WhatsApp group called “Ice city boyz”.
Akinnuoye, of Tunbridge Wells in Kent, called the 19-year-old a “batty boy” and he retorted: “On your mum’s life I’m straighter than you.”
As the argument escalated, the pair arranged to meet for a fight to settle their differences in Blackheath, southeast London, on 19 April last year.
Akinnuoye, who had a past conviction for carrying a knuckleduster was carrying a knife but Mr Wright, who was due to start a construction apprenticeship days later, thought it was a “fist fight”, the court heard.
He was stabbed in the chest and collapsed after telling friends he felt “unwell”. He later died in hospital.
Akinnuoye’s knife was recovered from a bush in the park and he was convicted of murder earlier this year.
Judge Philip Katz QC jailed Akinnuoye to life with a minimum term of 21 years, condemning friends who had stoked their WhatsApp row. He said;
“The trigger for this murder was an utterly trivial dispute on a WhatsApp group chat which involved you, Jordan and others,”
“Jordan lost his life as a result of this pathetic goading on social media. Jordan’s death was as pointless as it was tragic.”