October 14th, 2013

Too Many Tweets From Our Tax

David Cameron famously quipped that “too many tweets make a tw*t”, but that hasn’t stopped his government from spending over £100,000 of taxpayers’ money on learning how to use Twitter.

As Guido revealed in yesterday’s Sun column, the Foreign Office are the worst offenders, forking out £92,594 to send officials on social media courses.

Hashtag wtf?


  1. 1
    Ivor Biggan says:

    yes – WTF?


    • 5
      Sally Bercow says:

      I didn’t get to where I am now by being taught how to Twitter


      • 17
        Laughing at you, not with you says:

        Where you are is nowhere, isn’t it?


        • 22
          Vote UKIP - don't get owned says:

          Well it is the public sector. Why should we be surprised?


          • REALWORLDER says:

            Even that small sum is TAXPAYERS MONEY , it could have been used to pay the salaries of at least three LGTG outreach workers for year.


      • 20
        Elizabeth Bennett says:

        May I ask whether these pleasing attentions proceed from the impulse of the moment, or are they the result of previous study?


        • 41
          Fitzwilliam Darcy says:

          Y’know, I didn’t used to like you all that much, Lizzie, you and that smart mouth of yours, but you’ve begun to grow on me, like skin cancer…dunno, call it crazy or something…but I’m madly in love…


    • 15
      IDS ipad says:

      Wednesday Thursday Friday ?


    • 59
      Dougie says:

      Given that all the Arab Spring revolutions seem to have happened on Twitter, I’d say it was very important for the FCO to understand how to use the medium. Sorry to spoil a good rant …


  2. 2
    All the world says:

    there must be way too much tweeting – cos there are waaaay toooo many tw@s there


  3. 3
    RED ED - SON OF BROWN says:

    All the training costs for my Seal Team are paid for by my Union bosses.


  4. 4
    The Joker says:

    Is it April 1st?


  5. 6
  6. 7
    Ask The President. says:


  7. 8
    Abdel from Tooting says:

    I have never spent a penny on twitter training and it has done me no harm whatsoever.


    • 47
      Dr Faustus says:

      Last financial year I spent £27,873 on twitter training and it has done me a power of good.

      The fact that my twitter trainers were so-called ‘rent boys’ and intellectually impaired young women should not be a matter for HMRC at all.


  8. 9
    Dave"The One Term Prime Minister" Cameron says:

    When you were at right wing political blogging college did you know any kids who were gluten intolerant? Course you didn’t. Bloody attention seekers innit.


    • 27
      Sir William Waid says:

      Of course not. Intolerance is a specialism of the Left.


    • 34
      Anonymous says:

      There were always allergies. It was common. The idea back then was that everyone was unique and they just got on with life. In general a persons diet was limited, and any intolerance was eventually overcome. Either by death, by acceptance, or adaptation.

      Now the fashion is to be special, separating them from the idea of the average person. Every kid has to have his special requirements. Food is one of the best ways to impose work on others.

      Today we have such a wide ranging diet, with hideous numbers of ingredients, (natural and artificial) that it is impossible to find the real cause. For example, say a person was allergic to what is now called “olive oil”. They would first suspect it was bread related as the reaction would occur in meals traditionally with bread. Once a person is convinced they will always have a problem as their digestive tract would not be used to eating bread.

      To stop eating a type of food for a long time actually creates a situation that looks like an allergy. Real world travellers (that do not see airports or hotels) know that certain food must be eaten for a while before the “downsides” wear off.


  9. 10
    Anonymous says:

    Seems sensible given the explosion in social media. The irony of a blogger like Guido whining about this obviously lost to him.


    • 18
      Twatwatch says:

      There’s nothing sensible about it at all. It’s scandalous……a cavalier attitude to public money.


    • 26
      Vote UKIP - don't get owned says:

      How much did they spend on learning how to use a drinks machine?


    • 35
      Partidge Shoot says:

      Not sensible at all. Governments should not be using the Twitter anyway. Most ordinary people do not.


    • 36
      The general public says:

      No-one had to pay us to learn how to use twitter.


    • 62
      Sweary Pete says:

      Sensible? Course it’s not fucking sensible. Every fucking child who’s got a fucking phone learns how to use fucking twitter in 15 minutes, they don’t need to spend 100 fucking thousand fucking pounds on it.


  10. 11
    Squeaker Bercow says:

    Ladbrokes: Deputy Speaker of House of Commons odds
    5/4 Laing
    5/2 Streeter
    6 Binley
    8 Burns
    8 Bellingham
    25 Bar


  11. 12
    Billy Vague says:

    How do I download this Grindr app?


  12. 14
    Sir William Waid says:

    Spontaneity needs a lot of practice!


    • 31
      Ecgfroth of Neasden says:

      If the English had been the bingo kind
      They wouldn’t have had to watch their king go blind
      But some silly Saxon had to shout
      “Cor, arrows! Watch out!”
      When all the time the cry should have been
      “Eyes down, look in!”


  13. 16
    Doris Goldblatt says:

    Today is the anniversary of the Battle of Hastings.


    • 28
      Herman Von Rumbellows says:

      I predict long lasting peace with Imperial Germany and the Austro-Hungarian empire.
      But only thanks to the EU.


  14. 19
    Centre Parting says:

    Why is Nick Clegg on one of the McCann e-fit photos?


  15. 29
    @kilkeal says:

    Indicates the educational attainment of FCO employees. Trust they are paid peanuts.


    • 33
      The civil service says:

      Peanuts, canapes, champagne. We scoff it, you pay for it.


      • 57
        Anonymous says:

        A bloke goes to the local council to apply for a job in the office
        The interviewer asks him, “Are you allergic to anything?”
        He replies, “Yes, caffeine.”
        “Have you ever worked for the public service before?”
        Yes, I was in the army.” he says, “I was in Iraq for two tours.”
        The interviewer says, “That will give you 5 extra points towards
        Then he asks, “Are you disabled in any way?”
        The guy says, “Yes. A mine exploded near me when I was there and I lost
        both of my testicles”.
        The interviewer grimaces and then says, “O.K. You’ve got enough points
        for me to take you on right away.Our normal hours are from 8.00am to
        4.00pm…….but you can start tomorrow at 10.00am – and carry on starting at
        10.00am every day.”
        The bloke is puzzled and asks, “If the work hours are from 8.00am to
        4.00pm, why don’t you want me here until 10.00am? I’m not looking for
        any special treatment y’know”
        “What you have to understand is that this is a council job,” the
        interviewer says, “For the first two hours, we just stand around
        drinking coffee and scratching our bollocks. There’s no point in you coming in at 8 is there?.”


  16. 38
    Firm But Fair says:

    All public spending should be submitted to a simple test: is this essential?

    Twitter training is not essential. If staff want learn how to use it, make them pay for it.


    • 43
      Barack Obama, POTUS, says:

      “All public spending should be submitted to a simple test: is this essential?”

      That’s the nub of things on my side of the Big Dr!nk– I’ve found it to be essential to assign more National Parks Service employees to guard national monuments against “trespassers” than were there ordinarily when those monuments were open to the public.

      Saw the Repub’s fawt innit.


  17. 39
    Facepalm Pete says:

    Training Twits, more like.



  18. 40
    Well I never says:


  19. 42
    Greg says:

    How about training them not to cover-up establishment paedophilia?


  20. 48
    The general public says:

    So whose mate was paid to provide this ‘training’?


  21. 49
    John Tandy says:



  22. 52
    NBeale says:

    Considering the trouble caused by ill-judged tweets but also the awesome extent to which Twitter is used for major business and political purposes this is certainly money well spent.

    A bad tweet could cause a Diplomatic Incident.


  23. 55

    Champagne Twitterati!


  24. 56
    Juvenalian Precariat says:

    Twitter is so last century, Everyone is using two tin ans and piece string now.

    Is anyone in charge around here?


  25. 58
    steve klane says:

    My young lad managed to work out how to use twitter all by himself, but then he is aged twelve and when a brain is that advanced no training is needed.
    Can they think of anything else to waste my money on, if so drop me a line and i will willing offer to pay more tax – Fu’kwits


  26. 60
    Internet Jeanius says:

    Could they not just have looked at the web-page entitled “Twitter 101: Getting started with Twitter”?


  27. 63
    gerrydorrian66 says:

    How about all of us who taught ourselves how to use social media – why don’t we sell our skills to Oxbridge’s finest as consultants at £40 per hour?


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