Many local town councillors apparently think tweeting by members of the public or local press at their meetings is “a dangerous path to take” because people might pick “bits and pieces” and snippets reported live”.
Do they seriously claim that local and national politicians are never selective in the quotations and statistics they use to make a point, either in or out of context.
Those in authority increasingly demand more and more access to the personal details of the people who elect and pay them, but they become super-sensitive when it is suggested that they themselves should be more transparent. Do they really understand the concept of “Quid pro quo” or do they think that, once in office, somehow they don’t have to conform to any of the rules they want to impose upon us? What have they got to hide? They must actually believe that delightful quotation from Yes Minister: “The Official Secrets Act is not to protect secrets, it’s to protect officials.”
I am writing to explain exactly why I voted against tweeting in the town council meeting on Tuesday evening.
Today I have read on your website the report on tweeting in council meetings only to find that you have claimed that Coun Bob Sandall is a Conservative. He is in fact an Independent! This is why I will continue to vote against tweeting. It is of upmost importance that reporting on what goes on in a public domain is absolutely correct.
I cannot see that tweeting something as it’s being said or discussed can be an exact account of events. A councillor’s statement can be taken out of context or even reported incorrectly. While the reporter is tweeting he is not concentrating on what else is being said and therefore could miss something of importance. We have minutes to report on council meetings and we allow the public to attend, therefore nothing is secretive and is accurate in the public domain.
Stamford town councillor, Fitzwilliam Road,