Sink the love boat, step back from Twitter
There are many things I can write about yesterday’s Election night, but I really want to mention two. First, the mutual appreciation society on BBC One. The Corporation made a huge effort to provide its viewers with comprehensive election coverage, yet spoilt it all with its celebrity love boat. The sight of Brucie repeating his very tired “Nice to see you…” routine for the zillionth time on a boat full of B-listers angered me beyond belief. I don’t care what Bruce Forsyth, Piers Morgan, Mariella Frostrup or even Ian Hislop have to say. I just want to see the results and hear commentary and analysis from people who know what they’re talking about. Mariella and Brucie didn’t.
If politicians are disconnected, so is the BBC. Can the Corporation honestly justify spending licence fee money on a bunch of usual suspects who stuffed their faces with canapés and champagne and contributed virtually nothing? Why not go a step further and use the election night to promote another Lloyd-Webber show or ask Anton DuBeke to perform the cha cha every time new results are announced?
The second thing is Twitter. Or to be more precise, one its many facets, the one commonly known as the echo chamber effect. Don’t savage me. I’m not criticising Twitter or denying its role in the campaign. I was simply looking at the stream of disappointed tweets last night and earlier this morning. No, they didn’t win. No, Nick Clegg is not the saviour. Despite what Twitter might have led you to believe.
And yes, I know that the hindsight makes things easier, but the echo chamber quality of Twitter has been discussed before. Many wiser and more knowledgeable people have written more convincing things about it than me. But in case you don’t know it yet, Twitter does not necessarily reflect what the wider world thinks. Take its “wisdom of crowds” with a massive pinch of salt.
Because if I was to believe in what trends on Twitter, I would have to conclude that Justin Bieber is the biggest artist this planet has ever had.