Thursday 7 March 2024

You're barred!

 Well, it's happened again.

I long ago gave up on the attempts to regain my Twitter account; if I have to use clandestine means to get back on the platform 'now known as 'X'' what's the point? When I've done that in the past I have had to gradually reveal myself to followers to gain enough interaction to make it work... and then along comes a lefty to block and report and a 24-hour suspension quickly becomes a permanent fixture. So, no thanks.

I thought I would be in better shape on the Daily Telegraph. Yes, I took out a subscription because I was sick of the wall of advertainment with which one is bombarded on any free news sites, but now, guess what, I'm banned from commenting for 48 hours. On top of that, my subscription doubled overnight a few months back, which small-print threat I may have overlooked.

At first it was just the news, but after a while I found I was allowed to comment on pieces, so I dipped in my toe. Polite, measured, occasionally contrary, but never rude and steering clear of 'banned' words. Soon I learned of the merciless nature of the DT algorithm after composing a particularly 'precise' response to another post. "This post has been removed", the stern admonition read. Why? No reason given. Try again and replace that word with something innocuous. Nope, same thing, try again...

After a few such sorties you learn that the particularly crude AI which trawls the forum for non-approved opinion leaves no room for debate. If you really want to make your point you have to couch it in terms some readers may have difficulty comprehending - a bit of Latin helps - but did you want to entertain those readers anyway? So, no loss; there are a small number of right-of-centre posters who do come over as a little bit sub-optimal in the thinking department, but on the whole you tend to get a civilised debate.

And yet there are still things you may not say, for if the AI (Average Idiot) doesn't delete your post there is still the anonymous 'report' function, of which it seems I have fallen foul. No post removed, so far as I can tell (It's not like you have your own timeline, so it's hard to check) no warning for verboten wordage, and no indication of which post, or what sentiment has attracted the ire of the ever-stalking bedwetters. Just a ban.

But why not educate me? Why not tell me what I wrote to offend? At least X-Twitter used to allow you that courtesy, and even give you the chance to delete the offending missive. But in the Telegraph, no. So now the experience is very much degraded; being able to react to misinformed opinion columns, correct factual errors, or just to rub along with the like-minded, all have been denied me.

The thing is, I am really not an extremist. Most of the working population (those who have not had the sort of 'education' that exhorts the to hate everything Britain represents) have very much the same views as are belatedly being made public by some Johnny-come-lately political figures. Even the PM has seen fit to sort of indicate that we might have a problem with certain sectors of our population. Obviously he has included in that problem group certain non-existent threats, for fear of upsetting the ones really responsible, but it may be a tentative baby-step in the right direction.

But with outlets like the DT effectively being led by the same forces which drive The Guardian, the voice of the majority is not being heard, except when it is neutered and tempered with false moral equivalences. Once again it looks like I am left with this blog as my only outlet. This lonely outpost may yet receive my attention more frequently than it has of late. Thanks for reading, and if you have been affected by any of the issues there's probably a helpline, but frankly, who cares?


  1. I seem to be able to say pretty much anything I want on Twitter, as my account has never had enough followers to get me any attention.
    I remember issues with my local rag, the Lancashire Telegraph. I got banned from there so many times, I ran out of alternate emails to create new accounts. And it just got tedious.
    There would be no warning at all, just one day I would try to comment and get the message, "This account has been banned".
    I haven't looked at that paper since my last ban during the covid outbreak

  2. You are wasting your time. Nobody on that rag is going to be convinced no matter how well written your prose is. They will just stick their fingers in their ears and say 'LaLaLa'.

    The worse part though is you are funding them. You are giving them money to keep their business afloat.