PM Admits 'Disaster' of Politicians Using Twitter

Article excerpt

Byline: ROY BAYLISS

DAVID Cameron says that the combination of tweeting and politicians was a disaster waiting to happen.

The Prime Minister said he had predicted that MPs' use of the social media site would lead to trouble.

Mr Cameron's comments came as he visited the Sunday Mercury newsroom on Thursday during a whistle-stop tour of the Midlands.

As he leafed through a copy of last week's edition, he was reminded how the Mercury reported on Cannock MP Aidan Burley's ill-advised tweets criticising the Olympic Games opening ceremony.

"I predicted that tweeting and politicians would be a disaster," Mr Cameron said. "And I have been proved right."

It was not the first time that the Prime Minister has warned of the dangers of tweeting first, and thinking afterwards.

He famously appeared on an Absolute Radio talk show and told presenter Christian O'Connell that he did not use Twitter himself.

"Politicians do have to think about what we say," he explained. "The trouble with Twitter, the instantness of it - too many twits might make a twat."

Downing Street runs an official Twitter stream but Mr Cameron does not tweet personally.

Idiotic Midland MP Mr Burley sparked a storm of controversy when he tweeted that the London 2012 spectacular was "leftie multicultural crap".

After the outburst, Mr Cameron chided at the time: "I think what Mr Burley said was completely wrong. It was an idiotic thing to say. I thought that the opening ceremony was a brilliant effort to bring together our past, our future and the vibrancy of our country."

The outspoken Cannock MP, who was sacked last year as a ministerial aide after attending a Nazithemed stag party, has since claimed that his comments had been misinterpreted.

During Mr Cameron's visit to the Mercury news hub - which he described as resembling the command deck of the Starship Enterprise - he met senior staff including Executive Editor Paul Cole and Head of Content Fionnuala Bourke. …