Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Councillor in trouble for calling Scientology "stupid" appears on Newsnight

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Following on from yesterday's story about the Cardiff councillor facing disciplinary action for referring to Scientology as "stupid" on Twitter, here's the man himself, John Dixon, appearing on Newsnight last night (video via Index on Censorship). Good to see this worrying case getting some wider publicity beyond all the web action it has generated.

(As a little side note, look at how uncomfortable Kirsty Wark seems when she has to deliver the news that something "became a trending topic on Twitter today". You can't really blame her – I use Twitter every day, but I still cringe myself when I see/hear old media using web jargon like this, as though they expect their wider audience to have a clue what they're talking about. It's why I decided to copy the New York Times when its style editor advised against using the word "Tweet" in the newspaper, and incorporate the same rule into the style guide for our print magazine. I think Twitter's great, but I think we do need to remember that the overall number of users isn't that great compared to the numbers watching Newsnight, for example. All these Twitter-generated news stories that keep appearing in old media must be baffling for some people – I'm not saying don't run them, but they need to be framed in a way that isn't off-putting for those who know nothing of Twitter. Anyway, rant over - it's one for discussion anyway!)
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