Tag Archives: facebook

LDV at 10: Pick of the posts: All about Facebook

Fake Norman Lamb Facebook group screenshotOn 27th August, LDV will be 10 years old. In that time, we’ve brought you over 24,000 posts and published over 337,000 comments. Over the Summer holidays, we’ll take you on a nostalgic meander through a decade of Liberal Democrat history, seen through the eyes of our editors and contributors. We hope you enjoy our choices.

LDV was actually set up before Facebook became a thing. Or at least before it became a thing outside universities.

The first mention I can find came back in February 2007 when Mark Pack spied Liberal Democrat MPs flocking to the New Big Thing.

There’s been a flurry of Liberal Democrat MPs starting to use the social networking site Facebook in the last few weeks – including party leader Ming Campbell (the first UK party leader to do so, just as he was the first on Google Video and YouTube), Jo SwinsonSteve WebbStephen Williams and Lynne Featherstone.

Facebook used to only be open to students – and so there is a strong Lib Dem Youth and Student presence on it – but has recently been opened up to anyone.

If you are a Facebook user yourself or you become one after reading this post and wondering what on earth it is all about, don’t forget to join the Liberal Democrat group (currently 561 members, rather more than Labour’s 490).

Five months later, Mark charted how the parties were using Facebook in parliamentary by-elections, complete with 3D bar charts.

Facebook provided some early mysteries, such as the time someone set up a fake profile of Norman Lamb which mentioned his opponent more than you would expect.

The plot got very much thicker and Mark turned detective to try to unmask the culprit.

Amongst the Wikipedia edits is a plug for this anti-Liberal Democrat film which tries to pass itself off as an official pro-Liberal Democrat film (e.g. in the YouTube description: “Watch the video to find out why you should re-elect the Liberal Democrat run North Norfolk district council.” and the start of the film, which says it is “the Liberal Democrats broadcast for the local elections”).

The same username as that used on YouTube to upload the film – daisydukew – has also been used to make pro-Conservative comments elsewhere online: here and here.

d.The same IP address has also been used to make – deep breath – eleven different comments over four days on Liberal Democrat Voice claiming to be from seven different people (plus a couple of anonymous ones). .

It must be like Piccadilly Circus at that computer!

All of the names given are names that haven’t been used before to post on this site. One thing they all have in common is that where they try to place responsibility for the faking on anyone, it is always someone other than the Conservatives.

Then there was the final descent into farce.

Mark will probably kill me for unearthing this one, where he sings the praises of Lib Dem ACT. Remember that? I thought I’d give ACT the benefit of the doubt at the time but it seemed to be daft when everyone was on Facebook. Mark said:

Posted in From the LDV Archive | Also tagged | 1 Comment

Carmichael: Britain needs to hear liberal internationalist voices like never before

Alistair Carmichael has given his reaction to the referendum result on his Facebook page, reproduced here with his permission.

Facebook asks what is on my mind. This may not be the most coherent answer I can give in my sleep-deprived state but here goes :

1. As a result of the referendum vote we now have massive economic issues to face and deal with – the priority for all parties should be to tackle that.

2. We can not tackle these problems while, as a country, we are split down the middle so this is a time for bringing people together and healing the divisions if we can. I sense a lot of anger amongst my friends and I share the frustration but we can not allow that anger to be self-indulgent. There is too much at stake.

3. The only way in which a break up of the UK can now be avoided is if we go for a properly federal structure and elect it proportionately. Brexit is the consequence of a broken political system.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 4 Comments

Muscly Putin stickman – my part in the #EUref

Whenever I’ve tired during this long referendum campaign I’ve thought about how I will feel as I watch the results come in during the small hours of 24th June. Fear of losing, especially if not by much, has driven me to throw myself into the campaign.

And one of the benefits of a truly national election is that there are no safe seats or swing seats. Every vote genuinely counts as much as any other. It’s given me the freedom to get out and about as I campaign. It means that last weekend I was in Bournemouth, the week before in Liskeard, and this Saturday I’ll be at home in Plymouth (feel free to come along).

I wanted to do even more though, so my partner and I set up a Facebook group as somewhere to try out ideas and see if anyone thought they were any good. We called it Campaign to Remain – keep Britain in Europe.

We didn’t expect much. At first we thought it would be a niche little thing where we’d be breaking open the champagne if a post ever got over 10 likes. But we’ve been really lucky.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 1 Comment

Let’s all defer our tax liability for a year, shall we?

So we have another instance of a large corporation deciding how much tax it’s going to pay. Why does the Government let companies like Facebook, Starbucks, Amazon and Google get away with this?

It’s another example of where being rich and powerful gets you special treatment. The BBC reported:

After heavy criticism that it was avoiding tax, the BBC can reveal that profits from the majority of Facebook’s advertising revenue initiated in Britain will now be taxed in the UK.

It will no longer route sales through Ireland for its largest advertisers.

That includes major businesses such as Tesco, Sainsbury’s, consumer goods firm Unilever and advertising giant WPP.

Smaller business sales where advertising is booked online – with little or no Facebook staff intervention – will still be routed through Ireland, which will remain the company’s international headquarters.

I am told the change will mean that Facebook will account for substantially more revenue in the UK and will therefore pay a higher level of corporation tax on the profits it makes here.

Corporation tax is levied at 20% on the profits a business makes.

The changes will be put in place in April and Facebook’s first, higher, tax bill, will be paid in 2017.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 6 Comments

Alistair Carmichael receives death threat over Syria vote

The Courier reports today that the Police are investigating a death threat sent to Alistair Carmichael that is believed to be related to his vote in favour of airstrikes on Syria. The threat was received at his constituency office last Thursday.

The “abhorrent” threat is believed to relate to Mr Carmichael’s backing for air strikes in Syria and officers have deemed it serious enough to offer safety advice to the former Scottish Secretary.

A spokeswoman for Police Scotland said: “Officers in Kirkwall are making inquiries following correspondence received at the constituency office of Alistair Carmichael. Safety advice has been given.”

Police are understood to have ruled out any link to terrorism in connection with the letter. Mr Carmichael said he could not comment while the police investigation was ongoing.

A Scottish Liberal Democrat spokeswoman said they hoped police would catch the person behind the letter, which was received by Mr Carmichael’s office on Thursday.

She said: “A threatening letter related to the recent vote on Syrian air strikes was sent to one of the constituency offices and was reported to police. These kind of comments are abhorrent and it’s only right that the police investigate who is behind them.”

While this is a serious actual threat, you do have to wonder about the sense of perspective of some cybernats. In a Facebook conversation about the failure of the election petition against Alistair, the Yes Shetland Facebook account and another poster are debating the merits of arranging a “hit.” I don’t think they were talking about going for the Christmas number one.

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 35 Comments

Opinion: The right is winning on Facebook and votes, but the left on Twitter

facebook and twitterI have been thinking why it seems that right wing parties are more toxic than left wing parties. Is this true? Or is it simply my prejudices? Is there anything in the “shy Tory” phenomenon?

It does seem that popular culture is more left leaning, but I thought some numbers would help us understand society better and also help Liberal Democrats decide who to vote for in the upcoming leadership election.

For this analysis I have used the Facebook likes, Twitter followers and 2015 General Election votes for the following parties: Conservatives, UKIP, Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), Liberal Democrats, Labour, the SNP, The Green Party of England and Wales, the Scottish Green Party and Plaid Cymru. I didn’t use Sinn Fein because they campaign throughout the whole of Ireland and I didn’t use any other parties that I deemed to be “minor”.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 22 Comments

Open season on Facebook is unfair

Does Sir Malcolm Rifkind actually understand the internet? As chair of the Intelligence and Security Committee he has pointed the finger at an un-named internet giant, later revealed to be Facebook, for failing to report a threat by Lee Rigby’s killers.

There seems to be an assumption, in the coverage of this, that Facebook actually knew about the threat.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 20 Comments
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  • User AvatarJoeB 24th Feb - 5:49pm
    Michael BG, the figures are for the current account budget (defined by Office of Budget Responsibility as (current expenditure – current receipts – depreciation). Keynes...
  • User AvatarRoland 24th Feb - 4:39pm
    @Peter Martin - "It’s always interesting to read Keynes and other notable economists from past eras too. But I don’t believe we should hang on...
  • User AvatarPeter Martin 24th Feb - 4:27pm
    @ Michael BG, Sure, Govt can steer the economy. It can raise or lower interest rates to encourage everyone to save more or less. It...
  • User AvatarRonald Murray 24th Feb - 4:17pm
    As a third generation Liberal now Liberal Democrat with over forty years membership I find all the points made above excellent. There is no comparison...
  • User AvatarPeter Martin 24th Feb - 3:58pm
    @ JoeB, It's always interesting to read Keynes and other notable economists from past eras too. But I don't believe we should hang on to...
  • User AvatarMichael BG 24th Feb - 3:53pm
    @ Peter Martin In the context of what is a stimulus and what is austerity and how is the economy affected generally when the deficit...