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Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Tweeting in the house?

A few months ago I did a small piece in the Liverpool Daily Post on the landmark decision of the Supreme Court to allow tweeting during court proceedings. I said that twitter was the way the world communicated in the 21st Century and it was encouraging that court reporting was allowed to catch up. Lord Judge gave a very sensible summary -

“Subject to this consideration, the use of an unobtrusive, hand-held, virtually silent piece of modern equipment for the purposes of simultaneous reporting of proceedings to the outside world as they unfold in court is generally unlikely to interfere with the proper administration of justice.”

There is no better way to get and to give immediate live news. When I was in Southern Egypt in January, I was rivetted to the live tweets coming from Cairo.
It is a shame therefore that there are moves to block tweeting from the heart of our democracy - the House of Commons itself. On Thursday the House will debate an amendment from two conservative MPs who wish to restrict the use of twitter as it 'disrupts' debate -

Tweeting is tolerated in court. It should be positively encouraged in the house. There is no better way for me to track what is happening at the place where I am represented. If tweeting is not likely to interfere with the proper administration of justice then it hardly likely to interfere with debate. It is virtually silent.

This needs to be opposed. Go to Find out how to contact your MP and tell them to oppose this proposal.

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