Twitter Threaten CCHQ Over ‘FactCheck’ Rebrand Stunt

The cheeky move by CCHQ to rebrand themselves as a fact-checking account during last night’s debate may have got everyone talking, but could backfire as Twitter have said “Any further attempts to mislead people by editing verified profile information – in a manner seen during the UK Election Debate – will result in decisive corrective action”. Judging by the backlash this wasn’t so much a dead cat as a dead elephant…

Even right-wingers like Julia Hartley-Brewer and Susanne Evans called on CCHQ to reverse the rebrand, calling it “plain wrong” and “very stupid”. As Emily Maitlis then later pointed out, Boris was, in fact, answering questions in the debate on integrity at the same time as CCHQ was pretending to be something it wasn’t…

Still, not the worst interview performance Emily’s sat through this week…

Guido’s still waiting for the commentariat’s reciprocal outrage towards Labour’s own ‘fact-checking’ account, which, even worse than CCHQ’s stunt, doesn’t mention its Labour origins in either its name or its handle.

CCHQ’s Twitter backlash wasn’t the biggest faux pas on the social media site last night, however, as Alastair Campbell rebranded his account as ‘Boris Johnson’ and posted a number of misogynistic tweets, with one particularly distasteful one directed at Carrie.

When he changed his name back it kind of backfired:

He really didn’t think that through did he?

Twitter Bitch Fight of the Week

Two Brexit Party MEPs are embroiled in a spectacular Twitter bitch fight following yesterday’s announcement that the party will stand down in 317 sets next election. It led South East MEP Alexandra Phillips to declare she will abstain from voting. London MEP Lance Forman was not impressed…

Guido has got out the popcorn…

Twitter Bans Political Advertising

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey announces worldwide ban on political advertising:

“A political message earns reach when people decide to follow an account or retweet. Paying for reach removes that decision, forcing highly optimized and targeted political messages on people. We believe this decision should not be compromised by money. While internet advertising is incredibly powerful and very effective for commercial advertisers, that power brings significant risks to politics, where it can be used to influence votes to affect the lives of millions. Internet political ads present entirely new challenges to civic discourse: machine learning-based optimization of messaging and micro-targeting, unchecked misleading information, and deep fakes. All at increasing velocity, sophistication, and overwhelming scale…”

A cynic might add that Twitter made little money out of political advertising compared to Facebook…

Boris Gets More Abuse than all other Party Leaders Combined

Data from the FT, who have analysed abuse MPs receive on Twitter this morning, has concluded, “The most toxic tweets came from users who mentioned the Brexit party or other hard Brexit-related terms in their user description”. Fits the mainstream narrative…

However further down the article, the FT notes that abuse towards MPs is also overwhelmingly directed at… Boris Johnson. In the two-day period after the Supreme Court’s prorogation ruling, Boris Johnson received 6,507 abusive tweets – the same as Jeremy Corbyn (3,144), Ian Blackford (2,006) and Jo Swinson (1,423) combined.

The main takeaway from the article, however, is that despite all the hysteria, only 1.8% of Tweets sent to MPs are ‘toxic’. Either MPs need to learn how to use the mute button or stop whinging…

Tom in Twitter Jail

Appearing on Sky News, Guido’s Tom-off-the-Telly left the studio with a spring in his step after another successful TV appearance. However the smile soon slipped from his face after discovering Twitter has suspended him for 12 hours. The crime? Calling on the police to tackle Extinction Rebellion protestors…

Tom got suspended for calling on the police to be authorised to taser the Lambeth Bridge blocking rebels, just days after Priti Patel pledged £10 million to equip 60% of the boys in blue with tasers. Guido expects Twitter to be going after Priti’s account imminently… Unfortunately, Tom Couldn’t be DM’d for comment…

Happy Positive Twitter Day

Today marks the seventh annual #PositiveTwitterDay, where we all try to be a bit nicer on the internet’s favourite pressure cooker website. Guido’s Editor in Chief explained to the viewers of Sky Sunrise this morning what it’s all about…

Help spread a bit of civility in these polarised times. Twitter can be a place for the exchange of information rather than the abuse of political opponents. To tweet your support just click this link #PositiveTwitterDay

Support Positive Twitter Day This Friday

Since 2012 Sunder Katwala and Guido have been promoting the idea of the last Friday in August being one day of positive exchanges on Twitter. The political Twittersphere in particular can be a horrible nasty place, what with the culture wars and political extremists generally being unpleasant. Brexit has made even usually reasonable people bad tempered. None of us are immune from negativity, Guido is a repeat offender. Wouldn’t it be pleasantly calming if, for at least one day, we all tried to be nice and civil in our tweets? We sorely need to try again…

Last year a lot of mental health charities got involved and helped spread the message, this year Twitter are hosting an event at their London HQ. Spread a bit of civility in these polarised times. Twitter can be a place for the exchange of information rather than the abuse of political opponents. It is not just pay day on Friday, it is #PositiveTwitterDay. Let’s try for one day to make Twitter a positive experience for everyone…

To tweet your support just click this link: #PositiveTwitterDay

IDF Tweet Reprimand to Lying Labour MP

Rachael Swindon” is a Corbyn superfan social media account of dubious provenance (see Buzzfeed’s profile) which tweets hard left slogans, regular calls for Tom Watson to resign and anti-Tory hate. Nothing unusual nowadays. It is of course it is followed by dozens of Labour MPs and directly encouraged by the Labour leader’s office. Yesterday it tweeted out a video of ‘cowardly Israeli soldiers’ roughing up Palestinian youths. Except it was, as many replies pointed out, a well know viral video of Guatemalan troops roughing up Guatemalan youths.

That didn’t stop it being retweeted thousands of times including by Grahame Morris, a Shadow Cabinet Minister, adding his ignorant insight in. Despite being told by dozens of respondents his claims were a falsehood, it remained up. Last night he even got a reply from the Israeli Defence Forces:

It is still up this morning…

Twitter Bars Suzanne Evans For Saying Trans Woman Wasn’t ‘Ladylike’

Twitter has decided to bar Suzanne Evans from the platform after she sent a tweet about a Newsnight interview she had done in 2016 with trans woman Paris Lees, saying that Lees had been “unbelievably nasty and aggressive” and “Dare I say it, not the slightest bit ‘ladylike.'”

Owen Jones organised a pile-on, which resulted in Twitter decreeing that Suzanne’s tweet had violated their definition of “hateful conduct” and locking her account temporarily, with a warning that she could be permanently suspended if she violated their rules again.

Whatever anyone’s views on the trans debate, it is deeply troubling that Twitter saw fit to bar Evans from the site over what is at worst an insensitive comment, particularly given the cesspit of genuinely violent and threatening abuse which goes ignored on a daily basis. It’s yet another incident in the highly pernicious trend of free speech being suppressed and people being highly selectively barred from public platforms simply for saying things that hurt other people’s feelings…

Twitter Bitch Fight of the Week

Queen of Broadcast Kay Burley has spectacularly slapped down “the second best broadcaster on LBC” James O’Brien. Read the extraordinary conversation in full…

The whole interview is worth watching. O’Brien does not come across well…

We’ll let Guido readers decide who won that one…

Seumas is Getting Slicker

An out of character tweet this afternoon from the man who on Sunday was asked by Andrew Marr if he was an anti-semite. Is it too cynical of Guido to note the timing of this followed on from Palestinian flags being waved en masse in the conference hall – in breach of conference rules – and then a vote condemning Israel and freezing arms sales to a key military and intelligence ally in the war on terror? Seumas is getting slicker…



The optics of that flag waving are not great with many voters outside Gaza. It will take a lot more than a few tweets to convince British Jews that Corbyn’s Labour Party isn’t hostile…

Happy #PositiveTwitterDay

It is not just pay day today, it is #PositiveTwitterDay. Let’s try for one day to make Twitter a positive experience for everyone…

Spread a bit of civility in these polarised times. Twitter can be a place for the exchange of information rather than the abuse of political opponents. The power of positive tweeting…

To tweet your support just click this link #PositiveTwitterDay

Wes Streeting Quitting… Twitter

 

Wes Streeting has announced that he is stepping back from twitter after it “has increasingly become an angry swamp to the extent that its utility is outweighed by the negativity.” Guido agrees, and has invited Wes to join him for #PositiveTwitterDay this Friday where, for one day at least, we all try to be nice and civil in our tweets.

One last hurrah?

Twitter Bitch Fight of the Week

Remainer’s favourite loopy Twitter lord, Andrew Adonis has found himself in a twitter bitch fight with wet Tory Tom Tugendhat. After referring to Tugendhat in a tweet as ‘dripping’ (without even the courtesy of tagging him – very bad twitter etiquette), Tugendhat slapped back with ‘you’re just another troll’, before seeing Adonis off with a final rhetorical soccer punch.[…] Read the rest

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I’m Supporting #Positive Twitter Day on Friday, August 31

On August 31 back in 2012 Sunder Katwala and Guido promoted with temporary success, a “Positive Twitter Day“. Twitter, especially the political Twittersphere, can be a horrible nasty place, what with the culture wars and political extremists generally being unpleasant.[…] Read the rest

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The Exiling of InfoWars from Social Media

Guido is instinctively uncomfortable with censorship, even of liars. In the marketplace of ideas, good ideas should best bad ideas in free debate. That is the theory. So the exiling of Alex Jones from Facebook, Apple’s iTunes, YouTube, Vimeo, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Flickr, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn and MailChimp seems to be shutting down open debate.[…] Read the rest

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Farage v Verhofstadt

It’s all kicking off between Nigel Farage and Guy Verhofstadt. The European Parliament’s Brexit coordinator has boldly accused Nige of taking Kremlin money:

[…] Read the rest

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Iran v Israel

Clear slam dunk for the girls from Jerusalem…[…] Read the rest

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Viral Dad on Science Museum School Trip Made Up Story, Deletes Account

Twitter users may have seen a viral thread posted yesterday by “Simon from Harlow”, a dad live-tweeting a school trip to the Science Museum gone wrong. Simon’s “hilarious” story featuring crying, vomiting and lost children was retweeted thousands of times, gained him 7,000 new followers and was reported by pretty much all major news outlets – it was even a page lead in The Times.[…] Read the rest

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Michael Dugher v Owen Jones

Michael Dugher shot straight back at Owen Jones after the Corbynista commentator criticised the former Labour MP for swearing on Twitter. Jones accused Dugher of “online abuse” – somewhat ironic since the discussion was about Jones’s Angela Smith pile-on.

[…] Read the rest

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