The Virtual Doorstep
It is said that elections are won on the doorstep, and that may well be true. Being an armchair activist, it’s difficult to check up on that. Labour, TUSC and the Greens recently launched their Medway election campaigns on the High Street, and again this was difficult to check from the armchair. Twitter and blogs however are part of our social media present and future, and if the election was decided there, how would the Medway parties do. (The following is accurate at the time of writing) (Images were the first offered for each under a google search!) (Image size was not manipulated)
@Medwaytories haven’t tweeted since sept 2014, the home page has the same content and the latest news is dated 2012! Either the webmaster has defected to UKIP or they have no news. Both MPs Crouch and Chisthi have Twitter accounts, and Crouch genuinely appears to connect on a human level, with a mixture of MP news and personal responses. Chisthi is almost automated response unit of pictures and statements, informative but at times cold. PPC Tolhurst regularly tweets, about the issues on the campaign, however does appear to tweet in the 3rd person! Cllr Mike O’Brien regularly tweets and blogs, and something to like about it is it genially reflects his day to day activities as a Councillor, but the rest of the @Medwaytories seem to not feel the need for electronic communication.
@medwaylabour regularly tweets, though they have been accused, by Keevil mostly, of being negative. @Cllrtrisosborne, regularly tweets in support of Labour national and local, as well as individual ward. He also blogs. Reports that he would sacrifice your young to the Twitter gods to win remain unsubstantiated. The Rochester & Strood Gillingham South candidate @ semi regularly tweets in a fairly pleasant if unremarkable fashion. @paulclark4GandR regularly tweets from the campaign trail, or at least somebody does. @vinceMaple leader of the labour group, and fellow beardy, regularly tweets along party lines. Well say regularly, its almost as if he does social media in bursts. And you can often find older tweets retweeted. Vince has challenged Rodney Chambers to a debate #BattleForGunWharf and we fully expect Cllr Chambers to respond in the next 3-4 not in your lifetimes.
They don’t trust the internet, they don’t think people of Gillingham have the internet, and therefore Twitter is one of the only places a Gillingham resident wont get sent a picture of Goeff Juby pointing at a pot hole. The above image on the Medway Lib Dem website is, in a rumour we are making up here and now, part of a Lib Dem plan to annex Rochester from Stood Constituency and close the bridge. Chris Sams, a LibDem candidate in Gillingham does tweet but wants it to be made VERY clear he does so in his own capacity and does NOT have a view that represents the Medway Lib Dems. On anything. In unrelated news he also runs the @medwaylibdems account. @Prue4Rochester is the Lib Dem PPC for Rochester. Do not mention to her that she is from outside Medway. Its not relevant. Or of interest. Or have any merits in mentioning. Which is why we haven’t brought it up here. At all. No. @MedwayPaul Paul Chaplin representing the hallowed Gillingham Lib Dems. This sentence is as interesting as his tweets. Contact has been received from Tonbridge & Malling @TMLibDems so that’s Chatham and Aylesford covered.
We have been ‘accidentally’ blocked by @medwaypaul so he may have got much more interesting. or liberal. its impossible to tell.
Prue Bray fairly requested us to actually say something about her tweeting, What’s of interest is her Rochester centric account @prue4rochester hasn’t tweeted in a week (at time of writing) whilst her regular account @pruebray has. Does this mean she has given up on Rochester already?
Medway UKIP hasn’t tweeted since February. @UKIPRochester is currently tweeting. Has @MedwayUKIP been expelled from the party? MP @MarkReckless semi regularly tweets and shows a mixture of party line and seeming to actually care. He has so far failed to say anything racist, which just goes to show that Medway Ukip are not a racist party. Cllr Chris Ivine aka @ci247 formerly @cgi247 is the tweeting voice of Medway UKIP, happy to inform or cause offence in equal measure. Not all tweets survive.