Monday, 21 May 2012

Disreputable followers…

OK. I gather someone who was in a middle-ranking band has died. I actually had to switch off Radio 4's flagship Today programme because it seemed to consist of nothing but unchallenged tax evaders, grovelling royalism and endless encomia to Mr Gibb. How they'll cope with the death of someone genuinely important is as yet unclear.

But as it happens, I discover that a song I really like is by the Bee Gees. It's Low's 'I Started A Joke' and here it is in all its loveliness:

Meanwhile, I thought I'd share with you some of the people who've followed me on Twitter recently. If you're not on the list, it's because I think you're relatively sane and therefore too delightful to discuss.

The appearance of random and frankly unwanted followers must be connected with the nature of the medium: Twitter isn't yet an 'imagined community' in Anderson's sense, but it is a place of weak social capital. It's easy to join a group and easy to get out of one. There are few emotional or cultural ties required to follow people, and so it's abused by a range of God-botherers, political loons and purveyors of useless goods. Amongst my recent minions are this lot, none of whom must have read any of my tweets:

Fixmytax FixMyTaxTax Consultant & Compliance, Corporation Tax, Income Tax, Value Added Tax, VAT, PAYE, Capital Tax, Tax Plan, Taxes, PRSI, Levies, Taxation

Sickening. This guy's based in Ireland, a country which got rich - and then suddenly very poor again - by setting up as a tax haven and running an economy based on debt, fraud, greed and selfishness. Some people never learn.

How about this one?

AwakenToGod Susan ShumskyBest-selling author of 7 books, foremost spirituality expert, pioneer in the self-development field, highly-acclaimed professional speaker, New Thought minister

Clearly someone unfamiliar with my loud and oft-repeated rejection of any form of religion, let alone American fundamentalism and anything which smacks of narcissism, which 'spirituality' (i.e. religion without any inconvenient rules) and 'self-development' clearly indicate.

Then there's the usual tedious juju salesmen:

Hello I enjoy helping others make money. I'm a Internet Marketer of Digital Ebooks,Software,Scripts,Articles & FREE ITEMS & Great Valuable Daily Tweets!!
Daily updates for the entire legal profession. Read the latest legal industry news and insight.
commercial property. want to learn more? dm me.
 ‏ @tyachtcharters
and the eccentric:Sharing Pagan resources.
 ‏ @nafiannafinnOffers classes in WMA (Western Martial Arts) FMA (Filipino Martial Arts) Pencak Silat, and Bataireacht (Irish Stick Fighting)

the notorious fascist Giovanni di Stefani:
Consultant Spy,Director of MI6 LTD, THE DEVILS ADVOKAT as well as Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Sailor, Rich Man, Poor Man(once) Beggar Man,Actor, Dramatist etc
But the American nazis appear to have got bored and gone away. 

On the upside, my piece on being a good lecturer was retweeted by @LibGoddess. On closer inspection, her name was familiar. She turned out to be a former housemate from my undergraduate days at Bangor! What a small world. She has a very good blog too, mainly about her work as a research-specialist librarian at Cambridge University. 

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