Troll Hunter

rowlingxBy Stewart Bremner

A few days ago, I did something that I was trained not to do: I replied to a troll. I should have known better, but I’d had a horrid week and had simply had enough. Let me explain.

As part of Yes Scotland’s digital team, the motto ‘do not feed the trolls’ was drilled into me. I lived by that rule during the campaign and have continued to do so since it ended. I have also, since the campaign ended, continued to make social media graphics commenting on our politics.

On Thursday, I read the comments of a prominent author, who again portrayed independence supporters as anti-English: ‘We’re talking about anti-English rhetoric from ‘significant’ people in SNP’. Coming after months of anti-Scottish rhetoric from all quarters in the media, I decided to make a comment of my own.

I drew a picture of the author, with the words ‘Up here on my $1bn ivory tower, I see only what I want to see’. To my mind, this is accurate statement: here is an author whose worth in 2014 was estimated by the Sunday Times as $1bn, making a statement that flatly contradicted my experience of the past few years.

I tweeted the graphic with these words: ‘I am sick to my back teeth of the super rich using their wealth to buy ‘democracy’ that suits only their prejudices’, referring to the author’s donation of £1m to the No campaign. Her justification for this act, published in the Telegraph, again flew counter to my experience on the ground. However my main point here is that I believe allowing a single person, or indeed corporation, to directly influence the running of a country by using their wealth in this manner is counter to democracy. Our society is run by and for the super rich. As long as politics is bought and paid for by them, this will always be the case. No matter how altruistic the motivation, there is no justification for any single entity being allowed such excess of influence.

As with any such social media posting, I was prepared for the usual mixed reaction. Yet a little over a day after posting, with the reactions gradually stopping, there was a sudden and great increase in trolling and personal attacks on me. In nine months of commenting in a personal capacity, I have seen nothing like it.

After hours of this I was on the verge of deleting the original post, when I happened across something very unexpected: the author had tweeted a screen grab of my post. Clearly this was the source of the sudden increase in negative attention. I was pretty shocked. The super rich and powerful using social media to attack a nobody isn’t something I’d come across before. Perhaps I’d been naive. Certainly, I now realise, the author in question has a long history of such acts.

She wrote: ‘Pro social mobility, anti anyone who achieves it? Reminded of my favourite Bredan (sic) Behan quote: “Fuck the begrudgers”.’

I thought of replying. I would have noted the UK is nearly the most unequal country in the developed world and social mobility has rarely been so hard to achieve. That the author gained riches from a background of rags has nothing to do with social mobility. She is a unique case and the rare luck of one author has nothing to do with the mobility of society as a whole. She can swear at me all she wants, yet the only thing I begrudge is living in a society where individuals can accumulate such extreme wealth, while millions have nothing. My problem is with the system, not her. In her actions, I am sure she means well. I admire the author’s support of the Multiple Sclerosis Society, which is a cause close to my heart.

I would have attempted to distill some of these arguments into 140 character but I found I had been blocked.

A double shock, then. Trolled and blocked all at once. What was the author thinking? What did she want? Why bring my hitherto mostly unnoticed comment to the attention of her 4.79m followers? When one of the most famous authors on the planet brings her influence to bear on a nobody artist from a country that voted not to be a country, what does it say about her? What is this situation?

Realising how close I had come to censoring myself and that I had gone into social media hiding, I was reminded of my high school days. That was a time when the most powerful people in my society – let’s call them the big boys – used their influence to scare me, to devalue me, to shame me and make me feel worthless. I spent lunchtimes hiding in classrooms and planned my every move to try to avoid confrontation. I was feeling the same way now.

I’m just one person trying to make my way in the world. I make art and I express opinions. Most of the time, very few people notice. On the times that I have stuck my head above the parapet to comment, I’ve never seen an army facing me before. When it happened this time, it scared me. That I am writing this with the hope of it being published online scares me. Sweaty-palms, knot in stomach, self-doubting scared.

This is my own particular experience of the rich and powerful trying to bully the weak into submission. I don’t have the fame and fortune that they can shield themselves with. I’m just me. I have no legions of devoted fans. Andy Warhol may have said ‘Don’t pay attention to what they write about you. Just measure it in column inches’, but you can bet it was after he’d achieved fame.

We live in a society of ever increasing inequality, while wealth, power and influence is held by an ever decreasing minority. This is not the kind of society I want to live in. In truth it angers and disgusts me. I believe that independence for Scotland is the best, if not only, way we can address these problems.

When I’m campaigning in the future, please remind let me not to feed the trolls.

Comments (121)

Join the Discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. sandy ritchie says:

    Super rich using their wealth to buy democracy… that’s a bit rich..lol …better not tell Mr and Mrs Weir, they may stop backing the SNP..!!

    1. Frank Lynch says:

      They don’t go rushing to the papers every time some one criticizes them.

    2. Paul Martin says:

      The Weirs and Rowling have both used their money to underwrite political parties. And both have funded good works. The difference is that Rowling went the extra mile by becoming “a player” in social media and spinning tales of underlying anti-English sentiment in the SNP. As a member of the SNP I’ve yet to experience any such thing – and given the number of English-born activists in the SNP across Scotland, I’m sure they’d be the first to bring it to attention – if it existed. It doesn’t. The Weirs on the other hand keep a very low and dignified profile. They don’t spread shite on twitter like Rowling.

      1. Sandy Ritchie says:

        “I tweeted the graphic with these words: ‘I am sick to my back teeth of the super rich using their wealth to buy ‘democracy’ that suits only their prejudices'”, so stated Mr Bremner referring to the author’s donation of £1m to the No campaign”…ahem everyone…that’s Stewart Bremner’s words I was referring to in my post above …not Rowlings claims of anti English bias. That claim makes her fair game for cybernats or indie trolls to my mind. However given that the Weirs have donated millions (well at least 2 million at the last count), to the SNP, it cries of sheer hypocrisy for Mr Bremner to refer to Rowlings using her wealth to buy democracy, when the Weirs alone donated more to the SNP, than all Labour’s donations put together. Not that I have anything against individuals donating their hard earned cash (cough) to political parties by the way, although personally speaking I think there should be a limit to how much per annum is donated by individuals.
        Apart from that both Rowlings and the Weirs donate to charitable organisations for which I’m sure these organisations are eternally grateful…and long may it continue.

        1. Vinnie says:

          The difference is the Weir’s don’t use their influence to blacken the character of thousands, they give a donation and leave it at that.

    3. Jamie Kirkwood says:

      Better not tell the financial sector who fund your party, the nasty party (Conservative party) who in turn look the other way as they rape this country through tax avoidance. Good to see you have your priorities in order you idiot.

      1. sandy ritchie says:

        Looks you like you don’t know the meaning of hypocrisy Jamie boy. As for being a Tory …wrong….so stop making daft assumptions about people you know eff all about…..just saying like

    4. Stevie Anderson says:

      Did you fall on the keyboard there Sandy? No one can be that excited

      1. Muscleguy says:

        I’m sort of with Sandy, Mr Bremner should really have at least addressed the issue of the Weirs. That he didn’t opens him sadly to a charge of hypocrisy. I say that as a committed Yesser but hypocrisy is hypocrisy.

        I agree with the distinction made by Paul Martin above. Mr Bremner could easily have made that one which would have exempted him from at least rank hypocrisy. As a former central member of Yes Scotland as well to pretend not to know about the Weirs just makes it worse.

        1. kaemar says:

          Plenty people make large donations to the parties they support and that’s fine. But the Weirs do not make political statements and interventions beyond transparency about their donation. Rowling has waded in deep and made politically unacceptable comments about her fellow countrymen. That is where the wrong lies. It is morally and politically reprehensible and an outright abuse of her power which is derived from her wealth. That is the point I take Bremner to be making. And he is correct. The Weirs make no such interventions.

        2. Me Bungo Pony says:

          Not sure where the hypocrisy is here.

          For one thing, Mr Bremner stated … ‘I am sick to my back teeth of the super rich using their wealth to buy ‘democracy’ that suits only their prejudices’. He did not put any caveats on it like … “except if they back my cause”. Unless you expect him to name and shame each and every one of the rich donors to each and every political campaign when he makes his points there is no hypocrisy on show. It is all in the heads of those who claim to see it.

          For another thing, Mr Bremner is not one of the super rich who has donated to the cause of his choice. He would be a hypocrite if he was and then criticised some one else for doing the same. That is the definition of hypocrisy … to criticise some one for having doing something you have done yourself. Perhaps some people should look out their dictionaries.

    5. Onwards says:

      I do see a difference with the Weirs. They are long term SNP supporters, and it is no surprise that they put money into a cause they had long believed in.

      JK Rowling is obviously touchy about any perception of ‘anti-Englishness’ because of GUILT.

      After all, if she still identified as English first, then funding a campaign to keep Scotland effectively ruled by her original country doesn’t look good. It looks like a modern day colonialist attitude. She is obviously aware of this, trying to reframe any accusations from the start.

      I expect she is a British nationalist first, and any Scottish identity is framed in that context.

      I expect she is well aware that there were thousands of online comments during the referendum revealing that many English people have this arrogant attitude that England is the dominant partner of the UK, that the Scots should get back in their box, that we would never survive on our own, and would soon come crawling back if we had the nerve to leave the UK.
      She is aware that she could merely look like a more eloquent version of that.

      Scotland is her adopted country, and she has a right to identify as Scottish, but she knows that it looks disingenuous to many. She funded a campaign which essentially said to Scots that they didn’t have the ability or potential to build a more successful country with self-government.

      It’s ironic, because classic kids books generally have the opposite morals – Characters demonstrating the ability to believe in yourself.. to overcome adversity, wealth and power, bullying and challenges, and to be the best that you can be.

      In real life, she represented the exact opposite. At best, fear over hope..

      1. FraserP says:

        I think the issue of Rowling’s wealth (and of the Weirs’) is irrelevant here. Neither of them are spending their money to arrange political affairs to help benefit them financially. Rowling’s global income from book sales will not be affected one bit by Scottish independence, nor is her personal tax burden her motivation in opposing the SNP. Her attachment to the Union is partly sentimental and largely political through her support for the Labour Party. Frankly she’s entitled to her opinion there, as are we all. But in that respect I think Stewart’s tweet is somewhat misguided, though it’s perfectly valid if it were directed at corporate billionaires.

        Where Rowling is due criticism is in trying to smear without producing evidence and she would deserve that criticism whether she was worth 1 billion pounds or one pence. That she undoubtedly uses her celebrity to spread her misinformation to a far wider audience than would otherwise be the case means that the criticism is justifiably amplified too – she gets it in the neck from thousands, not a handful. But in both spreading misinformation and in passing it back to one individual she is guilty of using her celebrity reach irresponsibly.

  2. Paul Martin says:

    We know it can be brutal out there sometimes, especially when the balance of social media power can be so heavily weighted to those with money, power, reach and influence. But that’s why Bella is here, that’s why Stewart uses his art to call things as he sees them, and that’s why we stand together and kick back when JK Rowling uses her reputation to pass a poisonous fable across cyberspace.

  3. Frank Lynch says:

    If it was possible to recreate a turd in book form, it would be one of J K Rowling’s turgid tomes. Her next book should be: Harry Potter And The Vainglorious Scribbler.

    1. Jamie Kirkwood says:

      Nice one, that made me laugh 😀

    2. Mikeyboy says:

      A relative or mine is in a FB group about book reading, they share stuff about books that they like. A recent post was about books that are so crap that you just couldn’t be arsed to finish them. One of the few for me (I have always been a bookaholic) was the first Harry Potter book, it was boring, infantile and badly written. I later came across The Earthsea Quartet by Ursula LeGuin.

      I could not put it down. It is beautifully written and although it deals with a young man’s induction into the world of magic it is psychologically credible and emotionally mature, in short everything that HP is not. When I started reading it it hit me like a sledgehammer, Harry Potter is just a cheapo dumbed down version of LeGuin’s book, and I cannot believe that Rowling had not read the first Earthsea book which came out in 1968.

      1. Valerie says:

        I adore Le Guin, and all her works. I literally couldn’t read any Potter books after leafing through one in Waterstones! I tried to watch the films as they came on TV, just to see what the fuss was about, but never made it through a full one. It is rightly left for children, and no harm in that.

        As stated here and elsewhere, what pissed me off greatly about this woman is smearing, without evidence. A bit like Ms Moan. By all means, criticise about racism, but not without evidence.

        I actually find Jakey a bit tragic that she has so little to occupy her time constructively.

    3. Bryan Weir says:

      … and I am sure that criticism of the quality of the books that made her £1bn is going to upset her. Let’s stay on topic. What she did here was shocking.

      Having said that, don’t hold your breath waiting on this being published in the mainstream media. Had it been some high profile SNP supporter it would have made headlines within a couple of hours.

  4. Mikeyboy says:

    Rich a-holes bullying ordinary folk, who’d a thunk it? Keep up the good work Stewart, don’t let them stop you.

  5. Jamie Kirkwood says:

    Good article. What I don’t get about that stupid Harry Potter author is first she wrote a pants book and managed to con loads of stupid people into buying it, good on her but second she hates Scottish people, she hates Scotland, and yet she lives here? I love Scotland that’s why I live here and want my country to be free why are all these anti Scottish folk still here? I wish they would all piss off.

    1. kaemar says:

      Hear hear!!

    2. Sam Mitchell says:

      Double hear hear…

    3. Iain says:

      So is everyone against independence anti-Scottish then?

    4. sandy ritchie says:

      Many would if all Scots had your views…

  6. Clare Galloway says:

    Really well written, Stewart: it is very heartening to have you speak so openly and frankly, not just about your experience, but about the genuine fear and emotion involved in speaking one’s truth. May the force be with you!

    1. Flugeryl says:

      Agree completely Clare, you should never be scared into silence and fearful of devoted followers retribution….heard this before somewhere

  7. Lorraine Fannin says:

    I throw this in because it’s worth a pause for thought :

    “What you see and what you hear depends a great deal on where you are standing. It also depends on what sort of person you are.”
    ― C.S. Lewis, The Magician’s Nephew

    Where I’m standing I hear a very, very great deal of Anti-Scottish rhetoric, nasty newspaper articles and people like Boris Johnston insulting us all. But why flag it all up and create a perfect storm of nastiness? Some dignity needed, surely.

  8. Clive Scott says:

    JKR is fabulously successful and this has brought her enormous financial wealth and a social media following of millions. She is clever, intelligent, and sees the world in a way the pro-independence people do not. The MSM hang on her every word and cravenly embellish it to curry favour with her followers in the hope of selling more of their miserable propaganda sheets or boosting viewing figures for their foul broadcasts. The best thing to do is ignore her. She is playing the victim. Those who say nasty things about her or her sort will not change her or their view that Britnat is good, Scotnat is bad. She has one vote the same as you and me. My mother was English, my father Scottish. They met and married in WW11 whilst in the army in Egypt. Half of my relatives are English. There is no more wrong with them than any of my Scottish relatives. I have voted SNP at every election since attaining voting age in 1968. I don’t hate the English and have yet to meet an SNP member who does. I do loathe the corrupt Westminster elites with my deepest loathing reserved for the toady Scot’s on the make assiduously selling out their country of birth.

    1. muttley79 says:

      Excellent post Clive.

    2. HerewardAwake! says:

      Good words, Clive, you are quite right. We must not allow prejudice to blind us to the truth. As regards JKR I was obliged to read the first HP book to my grandson and thought it quite unsuitable for children but his parents approved. The lad loved it as did all of his friends, and that was before Disney bought up the brand and swamped the world with Potter merchandise. Then, confound it, friends gave us a boxed set of HP DVDs for Christmas – shock, horror – but I sat through them in the interests of fair play. I can only say that I thought they were flashy and trivial trash with some very dark undertones. I rapidly gave them away. Now to whom JKR and the Weirs give their money is up to them, its not against the law to make massive gifts to political parties. But I think it should be. Nobody should be allowed to buy political influence. The parties should be funded in the main by the taxpayer. I hope the Scots parliamemt will take a firm line about this, Westminster is as slippery as a cowpat about the matter. By the way, as regards the Scots Parliament I was very impressed to see the proposals for land reform and compulsory public purchase. About time too, but what a subject for future trollery and to get hot under the collar about!

    3. AnElephantCant says:

      Well put, Clive.
      I think that reflects the views of the vast majority of Scots.

  9. Andrew Squire says:

    Even obscenely rich authors of clumsy fantasies are free to express their opinions and to act like bullies & cowards on social media. They’re also free to use their influence more constructively to encourage fair and reasoned debate and to be respectful of the opinions of others, but a lot of wealthocrats seem to find that too difficult.

  10. Andrew Gardiner says:

    Great article. Hard to ignore the trolls bearing down but they seems to be questioning the right of freedom of expression and I’m sure the famous author would be up in arms if she was deied that right. Those who think SNP members are anti English just don’t get it. Clearly they think it has to be about them when it’s actually about self determination and creating the kind of society we want to live in.

  11. Frank says:

    Yeah, if JK Rowling doesn’t like Scots, why does she even still live here? English people like her are part of the problem, taking our future from us.

    1. Jeff says:

      Yeah! But there’s no anti-Englishness in the SNP!

      Except for when there is.

    2. Sandy Ritchie says:

      Oh Oh Frank…getting a bit close for yer non anti English sentiment….delete delete …pmsl

      1. Frank says:

        To be honest, I only posted that to see if any of the knuckle dragging self pitiers here would challenge actual anti-english sentiment. Obviously they didn’t.

        What are we to make of this tolerance for anti-Englishness amongst Scottish nationalists?

        1. muttley79 says:

          You have just admitted yourself that it was a stunt on your part. I am really not sure what you are trying to achieve, other than completely shattering your own credibility. Perhaps if you had something intelligent to say and contribute people would respond.

        2. sandy ritchie says:

          No comment… and no need for abuse either Frank…

  12. John Page says:

    So sorry you have had a shit time, Stewart. This reflects poorly on the person in question whose motivation in raising the initial concerns about the SNP and reaction to your cartoon are puzzling……what is her motivation?
    John Page

  13. Joe says:

    I haven’t read any of her books so cant pass judgement on them, but I have read a few of her tweets and they led me to block her ages ago.

    I think anyone who wants independence should just block her and ignore what she has to say.

    She’s just an unhappy billionaire trolling poor people on twitter.

    Also if you have ever wondered why Billy Connolly is so down on independence for Scotland listen to him on Mark Maron’s podcast boasting about how he’s best friends with Prince Andrew and Fergie and regularly has tea with the queen. Hippy my arse!

  14. Tess says:

    “When it happened this time, it scared me. That I am writing this with the hope of it being published online scares me. Sweaty-palms, knot in stomach, self-doubting scared.”

    Gryffindor for you, Mr. Bremner.

  15. Kevin Williamson says:

    Stewart – if you fire in with a graphic like that you have to take the comeback. Its Twitter. Its what Twitter does. No point complaining about it. It won’t change. Same rules apply for JK Rowling.

    And if you get abuse hit the Block trigger like yer Al Pacino in Scarface. Blow the smoke of yer finger and its goodbye troll. Love doing that. Makes Twitter worthwhile.

    FWIW, from experience – giving and taking – its better to avoid the Indy/Union Punch & Judy stuff on social media. It just saps yer will to live.

    KW

    1. Calzo says:

      Quite – It can be no surprise at all that JK decided to respond to such a barbed comment.

      She did so however in the full knowledge she would be unleashing the hoards – as e.g. Wings is so often accused of – and her original spat with Macwhirter was also done the with a large tarring brush and in the full knowledge it would generate mud filled headlines against the SNP and that mud sticks. She did this in the knowledge her gripes are really with a handful of keyboard warrior idiots and not the SNP. She is basically a normal, politically motivated Labour campaigner who wants the best for her country but really really hates the SNP and can’t get past it.

      She can’t be blamed for her actions, but she can’t be respected either.

      1. Hortense says:

        Agree. Well put.

  16. Matt says:

    You desire social mobility and more equality, yet pathetically fawned over Alex Salmond who wanted corporation taxes lower than that of the Tories?

    As ever, Nationalists don’t know what they are talking about.

  17. James Campbell says:

    I don’t like the anti-Scottish / anti-English scrapping. When nations interfere in the politics of other nations, this kind of trading of insults is always likely to happen. John Major is the worst stirrer on this issue who should know better.

  18. bringiton says:

    In the workings of the Brit Nat mind Britain is Greater England and anyone who seeks to separate from the mother country must be anti English.
    I haven’t met any independence supporter who does so because of antagonism towards English people.
    Anti their government.yes and anti their love affair with all things Thatcher,certainly but not anti English people.
    Their opinion is a very simplistic,even primitive view of our independence movement and perhaps belongs with politics for the under fives.

  19. Stevie Anderson says:

    Fine piece Stewart. Just take the blowback as a sign that you’ve hit a nerve there.

    Keep hittin’ those nerves man

    Stevie

  20. gerry parker says:

    “Sweaty-palms, knot in stomach, self-doubting scared.”

    That only happens the first few times, stick with it, you know you’re right when they start trying to gang up on you.

  21. Niels Bohr says:

    Translated;

    I spent considerable effort creating a graphic and comment that contained the character judgement of an individual. I hoped like-minded people would enjoy this antagonistic and accusatory message by promoting and echoing it via social media. Pats on the back are nice too.

    Imagine my surprise when my target responded.

    I am now a victim of online violence, please give me attention.

  22. Iain More says:

    JKR is a third rate fantasy novelist. I had to suffer her books because a little lassie when she was 4 to 8 years old insisted no demanded that I read them to her over and over and over again. It was not a battle I could win. Thankfully when she reached 8 she grew out of them and that for me is JKRs target audience for sales. Come to think of it that is the mental age of the Naw voting Brit Unionists.

    Money is equated with success in the Brit Nat mind but it does make them extremely patronising, condescending and arrogant and then they look and sound flummoxed as to why they and there poisonous brand of politics aren’t liked. Is her Perthshire Castle made from Ivory by any chance?

    1. Nevermore. says:

      No. The castle is made from children’s pocket money ( apologies to Frankie Boyle) (PS- see, Jakey, it’ s possible to acknowledge your “influences”).

    2. Stuart says:

      Come to think of it that is the mental age of the Naw voting Brit Unionists.

      Money is equated with success in the Brit Nat mind but it does make them extremely patronising, condescending and arrogant and then they look and sound flummoxed as to why they and there poisonous brand of politics aren’t liked. Is her Perthshire Castle made from Ivory by any chance?

      # You don’t get irony do you?

  23. Jeff says:

    On the subject of inequality, in Scotland under an SNP government has it a) got worse, or b) got better.

    The answer is, of course, a).

    Have fun trashing Scotland!

  24. Callum Smith says:

    “When one of the most famous authors on the planet brings her influence to bear on a nobody artist from a country that voted not to be a country, what does it say about her?”

    That she is human and didn’t like what you posted? As tempting as it might be to believe she wrote a series of children’s books in order to use her wealth and influence to subvert democracy, it’s probably about as likely as winning the Euromillions jackpot.

    And, if you genuinely believe that relative anonymity should have somehow protected you from the consequences of insulting an individual on Twitter, *you* are actually the troll in this story, not J.K. Rowling (yes… I cracked your code).

  25. Shen says:

    Keep it going .. Nae maer silence, be as loud as your talent can stretch. Inequality is Inequality, no one who has breath can twist that truth.

  26. annie says:

    JK Rowling is now in the same category as Katie Hopkins and Michelle Mone, instead of copying them and her poisionous pal Maggie Vaughan she should take a leaf out of her friend Sarah Brown’s book and show a little dignity.

  27. Camz says:

    “I have no legions of devoted fans.”

    No, but you gained one more person willing to listening to your side of the debate. One argument and listener at a time Sir.

    As you say, don’t feed the trolls, and don’t worry. The rich and famous can never have that which we possess. The ability to walk among the crowds and be no one in particular, is a freedom to treasure. While she can buy half the town, we don’t have to, and we can walk through it without thought of recognition.

    1. kaemar says:

      I agree. I like your point. Anonymity is freedom. All those who crave fame realise this too late.

  28. Legerwood says:

    I believe it was one of Iain McWhirter’s columns in the Herald last week that set Ms Rowling off this time.

    I think there followed a bit of back and forth between them on Twitter but she chose the wrong person for her twittering because he had the last word in his column in the Sunday Herald.

  29. A2 says:

    Let’s not forget that JK is a writer of fiction.

    May I also point out that it is not her wealth that is being used, but her high profile, this makes the comparison to the Weirs above, well… relevant to the article but of little merit on it’s own.

  30. JPJ2 says:

    Just feel sorry for JK Rowling. She supports the Labour Party who have been heavily defeated in the UK and all but obliterated in Scotland.

    How very, very irritated-and irritable- she must be 🙂

    1. sandy ritchie says:

      Maybe you should check out her history…you’ll find that she had no silver spoon in her mouth. She has old fashioned Labour values…and so has many of the new SNP supporters…but not all by any means…

      1. Me Bungo Pony says:

        What does her history have to do with the comment you replied to?

      2. JPJ2 says:

        Sandy Ritchie

        Please explain in what possible way your comment can be construed as a relevant response to mine???

        1. sandy ritchie says:

          If you have old fashioned Labour values…lived through Thatcher years…marched on anti poll tax demonstrations …yes a fought side by side English Welsh and Irish…you don’t give that up very easily… So JK been poor …very poor…and it was Labour values that helped her in the early years…so back to my original post..if Weirs, JK and others wish to donate to political parties so be it…but let’s not start whingeing about affecting democracy when SNP, Labour and of course the Tories all beneficiaries. As for JKs alleged trolling…if she does that…then she’s fair game in my opinion…she can block as you and I can

  31. thomaspotter2014 says:

    Tick tock even lol

    1. sandy ritchie says:

      Tick tock?…you must be a Hibs supporter… Lol. That was the phrase Hibees constantly used when Hearts were in administration…. And guess what happened…so I hope you’ve got a solar powered clock…lol

  32. Roddy Macdonald says:

    I find myself in the odd position of being a ‘Proud Cybernat’ but, on this occasion, siding with the unionist in this Twitter spat.

    Stewart, you tweeted an ad hominem (ad feminam?) attack on Ms Rowling and she has retweeted your tweet with a fair enough quote from Brendan Behan. Why you chose to go for the player and not the ball when there was plenty to go for in the ‘ball’ of her comments to Iain MacWhirter, I’ll probably never know. To target her wealth when we were largely bankrolled by the Weirs leaves you open to fair enough charges of hypocrisy.

    To come on to Bella with the histrionics above strikes me as drama queenery of the first water. I did a Twitter search just before starting typing this:

    https://twitter.com/search?f=realtime&q=%40stewartbremner&src=typd

    and you’ve had mostly responses of support from misguided cybernats and a few relatively mild slaggings from unionists and potter groupies. Hardly worthy of going into hiding.

    It’s not bullying, it’s what some people do on Twitter when they are subjected to personal abuse. I’m afraid you started it.

    That said, you know I greatly admire your work and I hope you get back to doing what you do best, graphically tackling the arguments, not necessarily the players.

    1. sandy ritchie says:

      Well said sir…hope I’ve not embarrassed you with that compliment

    2. Stuart says:

      Mr MacDonald hits the nail on the head!

      Frankly the author of this article Mr Bremner comes across as a whining little wimp.

      He has a go at someone, they reply, and he runs off greeting, it’s not very edifying.

      Surely he must have realised that if you have a pop at someone, they might reply.

      If they are famous, and have a lot of followers, then it was inevitable that Mr Bremner was going to attract unfavourable comments from them.

      Especially given the contentious subject matter in question, which is bound to polarise opinion.

      As we can see in the comments on here, some of which like that of Iain More, might prove the point JK Rowling was making with his talk of ‘BritNats’, and Frank with his comment about her being English….

      However as we live in a democracy JK Rowling is perfectly entitled to make her points, and lets not forget Iain MacWhirter too played his part by waving a red flag in front of a bull, by writing the article that kicked all of this off.

      The saddest thing, is all that this reveals is how deeply entrenched the divide now is, which should worry everyone, even if at some point Scotland does become independent, it would be a very divided nation.

    3. Me Bungo Pony says:

      Two points Roddy.

      As I said in a previous comment, there is no hypocrisy in Mr Bremner’s article as he is not criticising Rowling for something he has done himself. Furthermore, he is not the YES campaign. The YES campaign accepting the Weir’s money as the NO campaign accepted Rowling’s is no proof of Mr Bremner being happy about the whole state of affairs. Again, look up the meaning of hypocrisy.

      Secondly, Mr Bremner did not “start it”. Rowling did with her wholly inaccurate and offensive claims regarding pro-independence supporters. I point this out more in pedantry than anything else as you are largely correct in that Mr Bremner had to expect some trollish come back on his comment.

  33. Denise says:

    I said more or less the same to her in a Tweet. I think she is not mentally stable, why troll folk on Twitter? If, I was that rich I would be a philanthropist. She is making a big fool of herself and safe to say, no one but the most rabid tribalist believes the SNP are anti-English

  34. Peter Shaw says:

    So … are you saying, say, Brian Souter and the Weirs should have kept their views and all their money out of politics and Scotland, Stewart? Or is that a different standard?

    You really do ride the Wronged Victim status very hard, when you entered the fray with a pretty obvious disparaging ad hominem sneer.

  35. Neil says:

    Were her family not quite comfortable, or did i not get the point?

  36. Hortense says:

    I’ve definitely detected a difference in the way JK Rowling is operating on social media. I accepted her right to publish her heartfelt pre indy article (a little of which I agreed) and even her subsequent tweets that seemed to be a genuine attempt to engage in political debate with all sides. But her incessant focus on perceived anti English sentiment and ludicrous pounding of Iain McWhirter the other night because of his use of one word smacks of something else. Could there be just a little of the machiavellian quiet power going on? As one of the most famous people in the world she can rarely go out in public unnoticed so as Stewart suggests is her ‘ivory tower’ the only place she has a sense of reality but it is really nothing like the real world we all live in? I tweeted recently that she has used her influence negatively while not finding it in herself to comment on her own favoured party and the outcome of GE2015. One would also expect someone of her intelligence to at least find something positive to say about the 56 but she hasn’t….and she won’t. In my view she is nothing now other than a major troll.

    1. muttley79 says:

      Rowling said after the referendum she would vote for the party that supported Devo max. Judging by her comments on Scottish politics, I do not suppose she voted for the SNP at the general election. What is it with unionists and broken promises? 1979, 2014.

  37. Sooz says:

    Ms Rowling does do some good charitable work and I don’t begrudge anyone their success if they win it. However, the trouble with Ms Rowling is that she has bought into the idea that money and status give her a platform from which to direct political traffic. They do not, and she abuses the power of her wealth and status by doing so. The Weirs have also been wonderfully generous, but unlike Ms Rowling, they didn’t misuse the fame that wealth brought, and preferred instead to let democracy take its course and for everyone’s views to be held as equal.

    That Ms Rowling thinks the negative attention she has received is simply because she’s rich and successful really is playing the ‘poor me’ card, as is all her “SNP are all anti-English” rubbish. The elephant in her front room is her very public, vocal and financial support of a union, all of whose unionist political parties, in various ways, intended to continue and deepen the cuts inflicted on the poorest and most vulnerable in society. Yet, she herself had benefited from the support and generosity of the welfare system when she first started out, and that’s what people took exception to: she very publicly backed a union prepared to pull the rug from beneath the feet of others struggling to survive.

    No doubt that’s why she enabled an army of trolls to descend on you, Stewart. You found her weak spot. Stay strong and keep drawing. 🙂

    1. sandy ritchie says:

      Re pull the rug…please do not confuse Unionisn with the Tories… They’re completely separate…all Labour supporters detest the Tories ideological attack on the disadvantaged and the welfare state in the name of austerity… 250000 marched in London ..mostly Labour supporters I suspect against Tories austerity

      1. Sooz says:

        Sandy I don’t agree. Labour were already saying that they would be continuing the Tory policies of cutting deeper into welfare and social services. This was exactly the point people were making about Rowling’s donation at the time – that it was hypocritical to support a union whose unionist politicans – on all sides – supported policies that sanctioned the poorest when she herself had benefited from them.

        1. sandy ritchie says:

          Happy to discuss austerity, austerity light, austerity max anytime but probably off topic re the current subject. I repeat my objections were quite limited to one sentence of Mr Bremner’s troll bleating about Rowling’s response…if yer going tae troll and you don’t like the response.. the answer’s contained on the tip of yer forefinger…in my case anyway. As it so happens I’ve never seen any of Rowling’s tweets or her nats responses …apart from Mr Bremners.. But for me its Tory celebs that annoy me…they’re the real enemy… and Gary tax dodging Barlow is top of my list…

      2. muttley79 says:

        Have you heard of Rachel Reeves?

      3. kaemar says:

        What planet are you on? Labour are red Tories, they back the austerity agenda and they do nothing to challenge the Tory cuts or the attacks on the disadvantaged or the welfare state. The marchers may well have been traditional Labour supporters but their grievance is as much with the totally discredited and hypocritical Labour party machine as it is with the Tories. If the Labour party were doing their job and working with the SNP to stop the Tory agenda, the marches would be unnecessary.

      4. sam mccomb says:

        Dr Gerry McCartney identifies health inequalities as the greatest challenge facing Scotland (“What would be sufficient to reduce health inequalities in Scotland?”). To address health inequalities requires the re-distribution of power, wealth and income. To do that effectively a Scottish government needs, in my opinion, to have control of economic and welfare policies. The Labour party and all other Unionist parties stand in the way of that. Whatever the rhetoric it is not clear to me that any party with the (possible?) exception of the SNP have the interests of the poor at heart. Ms Rowling’s political views and donations are an irrelevance.

      5. Elaine Fraser says:

        Sorry they don’t ‘detest’ the tory attack on welfare enough! or they would do something about it and I speak as a life-long Labour voter.
        Women will continue to feel the brunt of the Tory assault .
        Its not enough to say someone holds traditional Labour values – so what? – holding values while at the same time voting to remain in a system that doesn’t promote those values is ludicrous to me.

  38. Monty says:

    you asked for it, I suspect you would have been deeply disappointed if they had been no reaction and now your moaning about it and using it as an illustration of all that is wrong with Britain.

  39. Andy Nimmo says:

    Do not despair Stewart, I believe it was Charles Bukowski who said:-
    “The problem with the world is that the intelligent are full of self doubt while the idiots are full of confidence”
    Thats why it took me so long to decide to post this.
    As for JK Rowling, she really should spend every minute of every day counting her blessings that she embarked on her literary career when she did cos under no circumstances would the DWP today allow a young single parent the time or tolerance needed to write. Instead she would spend her time being hounded and villified and forced to spend her time jumping through hoops to justify the payment of her pittance.
    “who do you think you are you worthless scrounger, sponging off the state while you waste tax payers money day dreaning.
    Magic yourself to Asda or McDonalds forthwith or magic yourself to the nearest food bank to feed your children you parasite”
    And to think this is the stance endorsed by her beloved Labour Party.

    1. Broadbield says:

      Wizard and ironical, Andy.

      Keep going Stewart.

      I don’t understand why people go on Twitter in the first place if it’s only going to annoy them. It’s the most idiotic medium for social/political comment. It’s like walking into a pub full of the BNP and getting upset by their cheery badinage. So I don’t know why she spends so much time on it being annoyed and then complaining to the gutter press about (what seems to be) unsubstantiated abuse. She could go and write another book.

    2. Iain More says:

      Heaven forbid, she strikes me as the kind of individual that would write a book telling us all she lived on less than 50p a day or tell us that a tent for two can be made habitable in a biting Scottish winter.

  40. AnElephantCant says:

    Keep rocking the boat, Sandy.
    Ms Rowling is an irrelevance in the bigger picture.

  41. King of the Hill says:

    “However my main point here is that I believe allowing a single person, or indeed corporation, to directly influence the running of a country by using their wealth in this manner is counter to democracy. Our society is run by and for the super rich.” – Great… You’ll be releasing an article condemning the Weirs any day now then?

  42. thomaspotter2014 says:

    The entire present Labour party are imposters.

    Managed opposition who will be directed to implode every 5 years by their true masters the establishment.

  43. Cath Ferguson says:

    To an extent, I think this sums up one of the problems with the Yes campaign. Don’t feed the trolls is a fine motto and tactic. But, as a quiet, previously non-political librarian type I found “coming out” about being pro-Indy difficult to start with. And when I did, found myself really shocked by the abuse and, in particular the abuse of power inherent in the Cybernat narrative.

    In taking the very high minded attitude it did (especially some of the Greens) I think Yes Scotland failed to understand how many people were feeling they had to censor themselves to the point of silence. Not because they were rude or trolls or abusive but simply because their natural language didn’t fit and the power of the media meant however much abuse we on the yes side took, any simple robust debate back was likely to be picked up as the “abuse” and risk consequences.

    I understand why, but too often yes Scotland were too willing to let the Cybernat narrative go rather than stand up for decent people being demonised.

    When the media is running a successful silencing and demonisation campaign against your supporters and potential supporters you should be aware of it, rather than saying “yes, oh dear, so many of our supporters really are idiots, aren’t they?”

  44. Bibbit says:

    Mr Bremmer’s article is extremely accurate. Mr Bremmer did not instigate JKR’s attention seeking in the media with her quite ludicrously unfounded ‘anti-Scottish’ stance, which she and the media conspire to disguise as an anti-English hate. Ironic, is it not?

    JKR has a weird, symbiotic relationship with the press. She clearly misses the heady days when the children’s literary world waited agog for her next novel. The vested interests, anti-Scottish press barons see her as a willing shill to sell their anti-SNP propaganda which they peddle as ‘news.’ Hello? Hello? 56 SNP MPs? It isn’t working. Hence they become ever more shrill…

    The super-rich and the super-powerful do run the UK, hand in glove. JKR is best friends with former neighbour Better Together’s (BT) Alistair Darling. JKR donated £1m to BT.

    JKR’s fellow BT donors were a group of UKOK vested interests and the vast majority had no vote in the Referendum. The bulk of BT’s war-chest, double that of the Yes campaign, came from just 19 mostly tory donors, apart, of course, from Blairite JKR.

    Ian Taylor – £0.5m- tory donor- oil tycoon- private suppers at No 10 with Cameron – sparked cash for access scandal, links to Libya, Iraq, post Yugoslavia conflicts. Taylor threatened to sue the Glasgow Herald & National Collective to amend articles & they complied. Taylor tried this on with Wings Over Scotland which promptly told him to go ahead. Bluff called.

    Douglas Flint – Tory donor – CEO of HSBC Bank, noted UK tax avoiders’ facilitator, avoiding tax of billions to the UK!

    Andrew Fraser – £200K – in charge of Barings Bank when it collapsed with 800m losses! Wee Iceland jailed its crooked bankers and it’s economy recovered. ‘BT’ UK bailed out its crooked bankers, at long suffering UK taxpayers’ cost, awarded them bonuses, and sells assets back to them at further loss! Clever UK, eh!

    Donald Houston -£600K – owns highland estate – tory donor – opposes SNP Land Reform.

    Christopher Sansom £194- author – Tory donor – thinks SNP ‘dangerous’ and wrote about this ‘danger’ in one of his novels (in the name o the wee man…).

    BT even had former wealthy MI6 senior staff donating huge wads of smackeroonies to their cause.

    The good news, Stewart, is that JKR’s vindictiveness may have raised your profile ‘in aither pairts’. I therefore hope her ill-wind blows you some good.

    For my part, JKR is overrated. A tolerable talent. A George RR Martin or a JRR Tolkien – she definitely aint!

    Your opus, on the other hand, will stand the test of time and is far more valuable. I refer to an artistic and cultural value not weighed in pounds, shillings and pence.

    PERSEVERE, Stewart, PERSEVERE!

    1. sandy ritchie says:

      Lol Bibbit…moan about JKs donations to Labour…then trot oot a bundle of Tory donors. Try as you might Labour ain’t Tories …in the same way the SNP ain’t left wing..well their actions re LA cap follows that of Tories in England…and likely privatisation of Western Isles ferry services is a Tory policy. Dare I mention Brian Souter’s donations to SNP. Apart from his anti gay rhetoric, he and that arch tax dodger Richard Branson teamed up to buy the east coast rail franchise supported with indecent haste by the Scottish Government…not to mention the biggest press baron of them all Rupert Murdoch’s support of the SNP via the Scottish Sun. So whilst labour and SNP supporters hurl abuse at each other, there’s only one party sitting back and having a larf…and that’s the Tories.

      1. JPJ2 says:

        Sandy Ritchie

        It is the Labour Party who refused to work with the SNP after a hung parliament (beyond Labour’s ability to achieve, of course), not the other way around.

        Labour had better find a way to neutralise the Tory demonization of an SNP/Labour “arrangement” rather than joining in with the Tory abuse of the SNP, or they will be unelectable as a UK Government for a very long time.

      2. Bibbit says:

        Dear Sandy,
        Please stop putting words in my mouth and in the mouths of most everyone else hereon. Away back to your cave or under your bridge. The only party sitting back and having a larff right now is your UK Labour Party. When is the UK Labour Party going to stop voting with the Tories? If they are not voting with the Tories they abstain on voting at all! It’s beyond bizarre or absurd. When is the UK Labour Party actually going to do what people voted for them to do, and oppose the Tories? What exactly is the purpose of the UK Labour party these days? Do you know? Does JKR know? I suspect not. Instead you simply reset automatically to running down the SNP. That would be slightly more acceptable if you and JKR and the UK Labour Party could cite some policies of your own and, here’s a novel thought, even stick to said policies. e.g. last month UK Labour was against an EU Ref. THis month it is in favour of one! BTW, GOrdon Brown is slithering out from under whatever rock he hides under these days, to speak at the Edinburgh Book Festival and wait for it, answer public questions from an actual PUBLIC audience! That’ll be interesting. Gordie is going to tell us where he thinks Scotland will be in 2020 and 2025! I wonder if Greg Moodie’s is going? Are you going to go, Mr Bremner? We’ll all be riveted by Gordie’s words of wisdom, will we not?

        1. sandy ritchie says:

          Lol…back in my cave (made famous by Robert de Bruce)…or under my (Forth) Bridge ..designed by an English Baronet…but you in typical Indie cybernat style resort to “add hominem fallacy” as an attack purely because you have nowt sensible to offer…you shouldn’t really try to contribute to adult debate…best to stick to twitter… only 140 characters required..including spaces…that should suffice for anything remotely intelligent you may wish to offer

  45. Philip Terzian says:

    Apparently Mr Bremner is brought close to tears when a woman expresses her opinion, he trolls her, and she defends herself. Here’s a handkerchief.

  46. missyclaren says:

    I have 2 Stewart Bremner pictures on my wall. I have no JK Rowling books on my bookshelves. I know who I would rather support…..

  47. scottieDog says:

    Ho hum Stewart best just to keep the heed and win the argument in from of the 4 million followers!

    Twitter is funny. I did actually ask the question amongst some labour activists – were they going to scrap barnett formula? I had heard margaret curran say this in a speech she made England. My god talk about lighting the blue touch paper! I was then for the first time officially a troll!

  48. Andymac says:

    I would have thought that an author who populated her books with wizards, monsters, dementors, etc., wouldn’t have been at all troubled by mere trolls – maybe the magic has gone, if it was ever there.

  49. Stuart says:

    So Mr Bremner ‘Trolling’ a famous author is not going to instigate her attention?

    I’m afraid Mr Bremner is heroically pathetic, and far too precious for his own good.

    He made the point initially, JK Rowling replied in kind, and she’s the one doing the trolling?!

    “Why bring my hitherto mostly unnoticed comment to the attention of her 4.79m followers?”

    Seriously?

    What a wimp Mr Bremner is!

    “The super rich and powerful using social media to attack a nobody isn’t something I’d come across before. Perhaps I’d been naïve”

    Its the same old. Eg brag about SNP membership, dominating Twitter etc, but when someone has more followers, he then claims they are abusing their power.

    I am somewhat amused by some of the comments on here, like JK Rowling is on Twitter, but the Weirs aren’t.

    So that’s OK, and no mention of Brian Souter on BBC Question Time!

    Or that Mr Bremner says JKR is not in favour of ‘social mobility’ because she’s ‘unique’ case, and the Weirs winning Euromillions/Souter’s Stagecoach isn’t?

    It’s crowded field, but this is one of most hypocritical pieces I’ve ever read.

    All I get from that is “I was part of Yes Scotland’s digital team, and I trolled JK Rowling”, and then I ran away greeting when she answered back.

  50. Gary says:

    Public figures, particularly those who voice political opinions and put their millions where their mouths are, will be publicly criticised. As criticisms go, yours was at the mild end of mild.

    She often stokes the fires of sexism and racism by claiming herself to be a victim of them. She then trolls and verbals others without any sense of irony.

    Forgive her, she knows not what she does. Her publicist, however, should hang his head in shame…

  51. James Dow says:

    JKR is merely a writer of fiction struggling with a new reality. That the collective Scottish psyche that has lain in repose for several generations awaiting the right moment and guardian is now fully awake and rested. Possessed of a hunger that can only be sated by the restoration of a sovereign Scotland.

  52. Guy from exotic Bristol says:

    …..but a new set of elites will arise when/if Scotland gets independence.
    This is the thing I so love about many contributors to this website – it is the hope for a better future – a hope which flies in the face of what humans do i.e one set of class room bullies replacing another set of class room bullies.
    I mean for sure the big difference will be Scottish bullies rather than foreigners but they will still be bullies with all the power that position entails.

    1. H Scott says:

      So all countries have their ‘classroom bullies’. That doesn’t make all countries the same. I’d rather live in Denmark with their classroom bullies than Saudi Arabia with theirs.

  53. Ian Brooksbank says:

    The explanation of the ‘trolled and blocked’ phenomenon, as well as reposting is simple. it comes back to the old saying “There’s no such thing as bad publicity.” From someone who makes millions from being widely read this is certainly the case, and I would suggest that what you would regard as the real issues, are in fact of no great importance to your opponent whose real issue is making money and keeping herself prominent and apparently influential. As Scots we need to see with clarity the times that we live in, and see those who work against us for who and what they are.

  54. jax leck says:

    don’t feed the trolls

    arguing with a troll is like playing chess with a pigeon
    there you are having a serious conversation
    when it shits on the table
    knocks over the pieces
    and flies off.

    Jax Leck © 2013

    1. sandy ritchie says:

      But Jax…Mr Bremner is a self confessed troll, a very sensitive one it appears and one with more than a scent of hypocrisy.

  55. bjsalba says:

    Must confess I never read HP. Never felt inclined to.

    I do like Science Fantasy, however, and think that the best way to turn the tables on JKR is to recommend other authors.

    Never read Le Guin. Might try and get hold of them now.

    For teenagers I would recommend the Imager Series by L.E. Modesitt.

    1. Clare Galloway says:

      Yes, I agree: the Phillip Pullman Golden Compass trilogy is utterly stupendous too- very deep; powerful and challenging metaphor for our current struggles with our spiritual transformation.

      1. Bibbit says:

        Oh and Philip Reeve’s ‘Mortal Engines’ series, from 2001, is phenomenal, as is Patrick Rothfuss’s incredible ‘The Name of The Wind’ series from 2007 or one of my favourites, Mervyn Peak’s ‘Gormenghast’ series from 1946.

        These (and other works too many to list all) knock JKR into a cocked hat.

  56. Anton says:

    This whole discussion is insane. Stewart Bremner posts a tweet critical of JK Rowling. She responds with a tweet critical of Stewart Bremner. Shock horror! The first question that intrigues me is which of them is the troll?

    As for his argument that “my main point here is that I believe allowing a single person, or indeed corporation, to directly influence the running of a country by using their wealth in this manner is counter to democracy”, I would only ask him, by way of authenticity, to condemn Brian Souter on the same grounds.

    As for the Weirs, as far as I’m concerned they can do whatever they like with their winnings. And I heartily endorse their condemnation of “smears and personal attacks”, and their view that “no-one – on any side – should be vilified for the views they hold, lest our democracy become the victim of the present debate…differences can and should be expressed – but decently, with honesty and integrity”.

    A view that many of the posters above, not to mention Stuart Bremner himself, would do well to contemplate.

    1. Denise says:

      However JK Rowling has called independence supporters Death Eaters (Nazis) and accused the SNP of being anti-English. JK is in a powerful position and is bullying people by using her fame (MSM) and fans to attack and abuse them. JK is a bully be anyone definition

      1. BeeDee says:

        Can I leave this discourse? Please please please?

  57. Neil says:

    This celebrity gossip column is the most commented-on article here by a factor of 5.

    Maybe we should also have a critique of what she was wearing when she tweeted, and the release date of her next book?

    Imagine if Brian Soutar was on Twitter! He thinks homosexuals are going to Hell, and that all the oil in the world ran out 10 years ago. I think he is actually serious… Shame he doesn’t tweet, really.

  58. Grendel says:

    Since when did the simple exchange of differences of opinion become trolling? Simply disagreeing with someone ISN’T trolling. Reasonably stating your case ISN’T trolling. Creating a meme which contains legitimate criticism ISN’T trolling.

    The social media world is a big one. You may share something within what you believe is your circle, but don’t be surprised if it takes legs and walks. Then answers you back and owns you.

    JK Trolling is a master of the arts of social media, though trawling would be a more apt description. Tweet something about independence, SNP, etc and simply wait to net the various keyboard warriors who can’t manage to reply without swearing, then let the Daily Mail or the Labour Party do the rest.

    People such as Ms Rowling have a far bigger social media footprint than the average punter and even if only 0.00001% of the responses could be deemed abusive (a debate in itself), that is 100% which is guaranteed to find its way onto the front page of the Daily Mail next to a bleary eyed photo of said tweeter being chapped up by the gutter press doorstep challengers.

    Argue your case clearly, don’t resort to swearing, disengage from situations which look as though they are going to turn nasty, and above all, DO NOT FEED THE TROLLS.

    Happy tweeting…

  59. chris kilby says:

    The Weirs don’t don’t delude themselves that they are smarter than they are and don’t bleat and play the martyr to the press gallery. Not that it would make any difference if they did. Unlike some donors, they don’t get an easy ride from a hopelessly biased press with the same rabidly pro-unionist agenda. Far from it.

    Don’t feed the (JK) trolls.

Keep our Journalism Independent

We don’t take any advertising, we don’t hide behind a pay wall and we don’t keep harassing you for crowd-funding. We’re entirely dependent on our readers to support us.

Subscribe

Don’t miss a single article. Enter your email address to subscribe for free here and receive Bella direct to your inbox.

 
Bella Caledonia