Thursday, 19 January 2012

2012 – The year of the Tweeting Twit

Let’s all be honest, when celebrities first got on Twitter, fearlessly spouting forth from the round table of life, it was quite satisfying to see the occasional fall from grace in the form of an all too honest tweet. Twitter, quite expertly liberalised us from the age of publicity-vetted blandness - note @RupertMurdoch’s most recent tirade against Obama and Google recently blogged about here. However, it would appear that politicians too are falling victim to stupidity’s tendency to go viral! 

Yes, it’s been a bit of a false start to the Olympic year for some of Britain’s more politically motivated Twitterati! There’s been a triple entente of 140 character social media faux pas’ already, ending in nationwide trending hash tags - effectively a mass digital sniggering from the online populace.

So strike one: Diane Abbot (@HackneyAbbott) tweets, “'White people love playing 'divide & rule. We should not play their game #tacticasoldascolonialism.” With racial tension resurfacing amidst the Stephen Lawrence murder trial, it’s safe to say @HackneyAbbott was justifiably the first tweeting twit of the year.

Strike two: You’d think the calls for Abbott to resign after her 140 character fail would have resulted in slightly more diligent proofreading. At the very least the party leader would make sure the messages he pushed through the channel were fitting. Well, no. Ed Miliband (or someone in his digital team) let loose a rather inconvenient Freudian slip in a tweeted tribute to Bob Holness. Safe to say, Bob won’t be fondly remembered for ‘Blackbusters.’ Tweeting twit number two.

Strike three: MP Tom Harris, the Labour party’s ‘social media guru’ or ‘Twitter tsar’ (these titles are already open to debate after strike’s one and two) tweets a Downfall parody of SNP leader Alex Salmond and is forced to resign. If there is a no go area in UK politics it is Mein Führer. You’d think a social guru would have been aware of the parameters within which to operate such digital prowess. At least we found the source of the problem - tweeting wit number three.

Fact of the matter is, these are all fairly regular, minor gaffes (bar the Hitler one from MP Tom Harris, that was plain idiotic), but with quite large repercussions online. Quite simply, when you’re something of a someone on social media the key is to remember that age old adage and ‘think before you tweet.’


Post a Comment