Tom Watson Backs Blog Off

There is now cross-party unity condemning the Hacked Off drafted attempt to regulate the blogosphere, as Tom Watson backs the Blog Off campaign against control of the internet:

“It is clear to all but the very stupid that the new system should only apply to big media -with print operations that might also have a digital presence. Maria Miller should urgently clarify how this will be achieved.”

As one of the guilty men leading the charge against the free press, it’s better late than never.

Good to have a “propa blogger” on board…

Hacked Off Faces Backlash from Thousands of Bloggers
Effort to Exclude Small Enterprises from “Relevant Publisher”

blogoffLast night’s hasty launch of the Blog Off campaign for a free and unregulated blogosphere has seen over 2,400 people sign the petition telling Hugh Grant and Evan Harris where to put their regulations. Hacked Off are revising their hitherto arrogant stance and furiously back peddling this afternoon as the legislation they advocated has backfired after UK bloggers realised they would be pushed into costly and cumbersome regulatory organisations. Hugh Grant has just tweeted a link to a post on the Hacked Off website claiming that the proposals have not been endorsed by them:

“They have not been endorsed in any way by Hacked Off. On the contrary, at the weekend we urged the three parties not to approve them finally there and then, but to leave time for them to be improved. The parties agreed to this. For what it is worth, we believe the potential impact on bloggers and small publishers was unforeseen – an accident in the drafting – and we know of no reason why politicians might resist efforts to put things right.”

Frankly this is nonsense. If it were not for Hacked Off’s meddling there would be no danger of bloggers facing this vain attempt at regulation. Counter lobby Blog Off, backed by BigBrotherWatch, are urgently looking for a Peer willing to table an amendment by 3 p.m. tomorrow to protect independent bloggers. If you can help, email here.

Blog Off are looking to table an amendment that inserts into the Crime and Courts Bill a clause excluding from the definition of “revelant publisher” any enterprise that meets the definition of a small or medium sized enterprise as defined in Sections 382 and 465 Companies Act 2006.

There is, to coin a phrase, less than 24 hours to save the independent blogosphere…

Tell Evan Harris to Blog Off!

MAX-SAYS-CUT-THE-WIRES

blogoff

A free and open world increasingly depends on a free and open internet. The internet empowers everyone — anyone can blog, create, learn, and share. It is controlled by no one — no single organisation, individual, or government. It connects the world. Today, more than two billion people are online — about a third of the planet. Hacked Off supporter Max Mosley told parliament he wants the government “to cut off the wires” to websites he thinks should be censored. Millionaire celebrities like Hugh Grant want to regulate free speech on the internet. They want laws to force dissident refusenik bloggers to risk paying exemplary fines if they refuse to submit to the regulator. The Hacked Off-drafted press control Royal Charter aims to regulate any blog that carries news-related material aimed at readers in the United Kingdom. Tell Max Mosley we will not be cut off, tell Hugh Grant we will not be regulated, we will not be fined. Keep the world wide web open and free. 

Click to sign the petition and tell them to Blog Off!

Adam Afriyie Chases George Osborne (On Twitter)

Until today Adam Afriyie had not used his little known Twitter account since March 2011.

Last seen 23 months ago moaning about IPSA and bigging up his local carnival, now the great orator of his age has taken to sharing his sharp views on the budget online.

He even makes the brave decision to promote that interview:

His plan to oust Dave and George has failed, and now he’s playing Twitter catch up. Truly a leader in waiting…

Mike Freer v 38 Degrees

As Guido revealed in yesterday’s Sun column, one Tory MP is seeking revenge after having his inbox flooded with identical emails from 38 Degrees. Here is Mike Freer’s get-your-own-back email to colleagues in full:

Dear

All of us have our in-boxes flooded with campaign emails from 38 degrees. I have identified the email addresses of their Executive Director and their Campaign Manager. My office will be copying each of my responses on their recent NHS campaign to them so they too can experience having their in box clogged with identically worded emails.  Although it is extra work for our staff to have to send individual replies and blind copy 38 degrees, it may help us prove a point if we all do the same.

The email addresses are:

David Babbs, Executive Director – em: David.b@38degrees.org.uk
Becky Jarvis, Campaign Manager – em: Becky.j@38degrees.org.uk

Regards
Mike

Mike Freer MP
Conservative Member of Parliament for Finchley & Golders Green
House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA

Not a minute of taxpayer’s time wasted in his office…

Tories Bring in Twitter Experts to Train MPs
Leaked Email Proves There Is ‘Lines to Take’ Tweet Spin List

Both Labour and the Tories have previously denied coordinating their MPs and activists use of Twitter and other forms of social media. Guido has long suspected they were bluffing; not least because Peter Hain doesn’t even bother to change the ‘Line to Take’ tweets before putting them out, and many Tories have been caught out sending  mysteriously similar and very on message tweets before. Now Guido has seen an email sent via the Government Whips to Tory MPs from the Digital Team at CCHQ that lets the cat out of the bag.

The email, sent less than an hour ago, coughs:

“At CCHQ we run an internal email list to notify people when tweets have gone out from @david_cameron or if anything high priority has gone out from @conservatives, so that they are aware of our comms and can retweet to share with their followers if they wish. Please let us know if you would like to be added to this list and what email address you would like these notifications to be sent to.”

Further to that, CCHQ are still trying to get the basics across to their less technologically able MPs with Twitter training from the company itself. It also looks like their more unruly and outspoken members are being brought in for a sinister sounding session on “compliance”:

“Twitter will be running two training sessions for MPs in the next couple of months (dates tbc) at the House of Commons as part of the series we are holding commencing with one on Compliance next Monday. There will be two different sessions, designed for different levels of experience – ‘beginner setup’ and ‘improving existing accounts’. More details will follow, however please do let us know if you’d like to register an interest in one of these sessions.”

They are coming for you Mike Fabricant!

UPDATE: Phew! Fabricant says far from being silenced he is in fact organising the sessions:

He didn’t deny the coordination of MPs tweets though…

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Andy Burnham’s PPS Apologises for Cam NHS Genocide Smear

A good shout after Guido’s story yesterday. Now, about that misleading of the House[…]

+ READ MORE +

Euro Striptease: Flemish MEP’s Campaign Ad

Former Harriet Harman campaign staffer Jon Worth has gone into full-on bedwetting mode over this fun campaign video from a Flemish Christian Democrat.

The only thing Guido finds unappealing about the video is the claim that the EU is transparent…[…]

+ READ MORE +

Exclusive: Tory Online Campaign in Marginal Constituencies
Highlights “Hardworking Families v People Who Won’t Work”

Have Your SayEd Miliband’s key political strategy adviser Greg Beales told the last National Executive Committee meeting that their private polling showed that the biggest doubts the public has about the Labour Party were over immigration, spending too much and being soft […]

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The Android native app can be downloaded here. For all other devices […]

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Quote of the Day

Charles Clarke says Cameron is the most successful PM for over a century…

“Under Margaret Thatcher the Conservatives gained 99 seats. They lost 211 under John Major, gained one under William Hague, quickly and wisely got rid of Ian Duncan-Smith, gained 32 under Michael Howard and have so far gained 133 under David Cameron who, to the great surprise of many (including senior Conservatives), has turned out to be the most electorally successful Tory leader since 1900.”

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