You know it is funny what you find online and sometimes even more so what you find lurking on your computer.
All the recent nastiness and mud-slinging aimed at Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters has been many things.
To those of us labelled hard left trots, a rabble and worse it has been challenging to say the very least.
To people cut off from U.K. politics by choice or not it must give the impression we are a band of monsters but we are not.
Take a look at the image above. A young Tory on a Facebook group called “Jeremy Corbyn is a dirty old man!”
Take a look at the list below and you will quickly realise Cllr Munro cannot use the excuse someone added me and I did not know.
Said councillor was happily adding people to the group.
That group may or may not still be active on Facebook. With so many people reporting the group it could have been taken down by Facebook.
It did not make an issue of The Times but we thought it fair to give it a share in light of recent events.
It is or was a closed group I think that you join to take part.
Some closed groups that are Jeremy Corbyn supporting apparently were infiltrated by trolls working for a Times journalist Gabriel Pogrund. Who knows if some actually posted click-bait posts and comments to get a response?
It could be though they found some real abuse as all Facebook groups face a tough time keeping abuse free.
I did not infiltate such a nasty group as Jeremy Corbyn is a Dirty Old man. That group by the was renamed from much worse following complaints.
But this old retired NHS worker is computer savvy.
Unless a group settings are totally locked down it is easy to see the list of members.
I acutally found the information having seen this nasty group on Facebook with some shocking posts visible and trying to see who was behind it.
Social media is not abuse free and it is not simply a Labour Party issue.
(Below more abuse aimed at Mr Corbyn on Facebook though we have no idea who the abusers are this time)
Hello all, shall I start this with something like a confession at alcoholics’ anonymous?
I cannot stand up to say it as I am sat typing at a P.C. and these days my old legs are not so good but here it is:-
My name is Eileen and I created a Jeremy Corbyn supporting group on Facebook a couple of years ago.
Phew that's better, confession being good for the soul and all that.
I have started in light-hearted mode not because I view all allegations of abuse as trivial or non-existent but rather because this is a heavy subject.
So firstly why create a group?
Why not there are tons on Facebook? Everything from dogs to politics to sex to D.I.Y and more.
Political groups can be a good place for sharing information, keeping each-others spirits up through any election defeats and so much more.
Political supporting groups have been on Facebook for as long as I have been a member but probably longer and from its humble early beginnings.
Some are lovely and friendly others feel like a jump into a lion's den but that is why some members love them.
Some people you know like to chat about politics anywhere and everywhere
But one reason is a positive group like ours helps counteract nasty ones such as Jeremy Corbyn is a Twat, Jeremy Corbyn is a Total Twat and Jeremy Corbyn is a dirty old man, which originally had a more abusive title linking Mr Corbyn to paedophilia re his young supporters. There is of course no evidence of that but those are just three right-wing groups on Facebook all pedalling hate, all reported to Facebook over and over again and which continued to cause offence, house trolls and be abusive, who knows perhaps all just for a laugh?
Funnily enough those groups seem to have been taken down today or recently. Interesting?
However you know Facebook.
Always able to find bits and bobs that lork after a deletion.
Perils of running a group
For a group to work you need a good admin team that all sing from the same song sheet and are there for one purpose only, in our case supporting Jeremy Corbyn on his path to being our next Prime Minister of the U.K.
Some Facebook users prefer to just have a laugh but being an admin is at times no laughing matter.
In our case we are now a small group of Corbyn supporters all working together as a great admin team, but along the way there have been bumps and hurdles.
We manage a group of over 4,100 members and some members are active online 24/7.
We obviously are not.
Our admin team includes the retired and the young working. With the best will in the world we cannot police our group day and night 24 hours a day.
We opted early on to add some restrictions to our group which means shares into the group have to be approved and so do new member requests. We added a couple of questions as to why a person might want to join us but people often tell lies on social media, don’t you know.
So we check profiles and do our best to make sure the person is a good fit for our group before we open the door and say come on in.
We do not always get it right but once a mistake is clear we remove that person a.s.a.p.
Then it is mind the door does not hit you on your way out!
In the two-years we have been an active group the admin team has changed more than once. This may mean we have stuff lurking in our basement which we really should bin.
Again we work to try to keep on top of that as and when we can.
But we do have open commenting and that can be a problem.
It means as long as you are a member of the group you can comment on a thread any time of day or night.
Whilst we check and delete offending comments some occasionally get through.
It has been a learning curve for us all including our members.
People are hurting under this cruel Tory government and when a person is affected themselves they lash out.
Is there any wonder ordinary non-funded, non-affiliated Corbyn supporting groups on Facebook get it wrong at times?
Our group has a great mix of people though all with the common aim of supporting Jeremy Corbyn. We are old, young and in the middle, varying ethnicity, well, not so well, vulnerable and people with disabilities, highly educated, not so educated and under educated; we are in fact a great cross section of the general public if you exclude the fat-cats.
And 99.9% of the time we all gel as one.
It is not only hurtful but sad to see such poor journalism in The Times today. It used to be such a great read quite a few decades ago now.
But these days it is under the leadership of Richard Murdoch former boss of the now defunct scandal rag the ‘News of the World’, still boss of the most hated publication in all of Liverpool ‘The Sun’ and long-time friends of high-ranking Tories and Mr Tony Blair.
Now that is not a conspiracy theory. A cursory search through Google images online will confirm it for you doubters.
In February the Daily Telegraph reported that the Tory Party was going to hire paid trolls to work for them on social media.
They were getting desperate to beat Mr Corbyn's unpaid band of faithful supporters.
We have all got used to being called a crazy cult, rabid trots and more sometimes by people within the Labour Party.
It is not called abuse though when it is directed at Jeremy Corbyn supporters for some reason. Odd that.
But I think we must all be getting like Jeremy. He has shown strength and resilience; When the going gets tough the tough get going.
In our hearts we know Mr Corbyn offers so many people in the U.K. a much better tomorrow, much better than more of the same old tired politics of other political parties including now old new Labour. We also know our man is not for sale and so do the likes of Rupert Murdoch.
Easter Sunday as many decent people who support Jeremy Corbyn are trashed by the mainstream media and have their names splashed in some cases across Rupert Murdoch rags it is hurtful to see supposed comrades joining in the abuse.
It's a fact some people are silly, some hateful, some fifth columnists and some genuine. Sorting out who is who online can be tricky.
If you see or experience abuse in any Facebook group or elsewhere online report to the admin, the site and if necessary the police so it can be investigated.
And do so no matter where the abuse appears to hail from.
A few images from our group have been used in this report. Some may be funny others more serious but hopefully non will cause offense.
Humour and satire can be a useful tool but also misjudged and misused at times.
Think back to Charlie Hebdo and have a long hard think.
If you are a Jeremy Corbyn supporter and use Facebook why not drop by and give us a knock?
We may just open the door and give you a huge welcome or we may slam the door in your face.
In our group there is never any offence intended; we just want to keep our safe and secure place where we gather just that; safe and secure.
For Background to this story:
In the Murdoch press:
Exposed: Jeremy Corbyn’s hate factory
Vitriol and threats of violence: the ugly face of Jeremy Corbyn’s cabal
Racist comments ‘should be investigated by police’
Luciana Berger: Four types of vicious abuse; just one way to deal with itJeremy Corbyn’s online army: the Facebook groups peddling hate
Targets of the trolls
On this website:
Lord Sugar you should be fired from Twitter
Jeremy Corbyn supporter looks back at this week
Where did you get that hat?
Lies, Damn Lies and Corbyn’s Anti-Semitism
Jeremy Corbyn Wins Apology And Payout From Tory MP Ben Bradley Over 'Communist Spy' Tweet
Minister's relative gives Tories £816,000: Labour
Tories hire army of tweeters to take social media fight to Labour
The Labour Party has had a tumultuous week.
It has been Holy Week in the Christian calendar but it has been one big holy mess in the Labour Party.
Today is Good Friday the day Jesus Christ was crucified.
But a few-weeks ago John Woodock MP fired the starting pistol on a right-wing attack against Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters.
It was John that kicked off the 2016 so-called chicken-coup and that was March too.
In the mix, of the latest unrest, is the dwindling group on the right-wing of the party Progress and those people wanting at the very least a second referendum plus those who want Brexit scrapped.
David Cameron certainly knew what he was doing when he allowed an E.U. referendum to shore up Tory voting but then quickly cut and run when the Leave campaign lost.
Others have been left to wade through a veritable field of quicksand.
But the Labour Party's problems this week had roots in allegations of anti-Semitism.
Events as the week has progressed actually disrespect true victims of such abuse as attacks are made against Corbyn supporters and are politicised by the right-wing of the Labour Party.
Alan Sugar, appointed as a Lord by former New Labour Party leader Tony Blair, has Good Friday evening incensed Corbyn supporters with the above tweet.
Social media activists and users have fought verbally online while many have simply been shocked and reported the tweet to Twitter as offensive.
Certainly if there is a problem with anti-Semitism what message does the above tweet send out?
For me it is notable that anti-Semitism accusing trolls on Twitter have remained silent.
Using anti-Semitism as a political tool is many things from dirty to abusive to offensive and more.
There are two tweets below pertaining to tonight’s row. One is from John Mann who said this week send any anti-Semitic tweets you see online to me and I will report if they are Labour Party members; the other is from Labour Party shadow chancellor John McDonnell who appealed to Sugar to withdraw the offensive tweet.
Obviously the tweet will act as a click-bait tweet to some and could therefore result in an offensive comment by an angry viewer.
Is that the idea lord Sugar?
As I tweeted to Mr Sugar "Once a barrow boy always a barrow boy. Money but no class. Reporting that tweet thank you.
I have included a reminder re John Woodcock in an image below.
Jeremy Corbyn supporter looks back at this week
Where did you get that hat?
Lies, Damn Lies and Corbyn’s Anti-Semitism
Op-ed; Google The Labour Party Wednesday morning and expect a wave of negative news reports including many opinion pieces like this one.
But of course THEY get full prominence as so many are courtesy of the usual anti Corbyn suspects within the Labour Party and via the well-funded mainstream media.
With a by-election and local elections a few weeks away now is not really the time for a torrent of negative Labour Party news. We have political opposites who are perfectly able to damage the party's reputation without high-fliers linked to and part of the Labour Party leading the charge.
The latest furore centres around former London Mayor and Labour Party veteran Ken Livingstone and comments made last year during what looked to be a carefully crafted set up.
Labour MP John Mann was on hand last year with convenient camera crew to challenge Ken Livingstone over comments made and viewed as anti Semitic.
Tuesday following an NCC ruling on the affair Wes Streeting, Tom Watson, Michael Dugher, John Mann, David Miliband and a few others have opted once again to publicly attack a political party they claim to love.
Watching a Newsnight clip of Wes Streeting saying his piece on their offering Tuesday night I was struck by his well polished appearance and words. There was no passion just well rehearsed words.
Presumably these usual suspects had been rehearsing their next moves ahead of Tuesday's NCC ruling.
Big boy of the Labour Party Deputy Leader Tom Watson according to BBC News Wednesday is 'ashamed' Livingstone still in party. Of course many Labour Party members suspended from the party last year may have similar feelings toward people like Mr Watson.
Watson has also been busy on social media however as this blogger is one of many party members blocked by him online I can only quote, if I wanted to, via resources such as the BBC.
Failed former Labour leadership contender David Miliband has also been quoted as he apparently "grieves for state of Labour Party."
He does this from a distance as he turned tail and quit the U.K. moving over to the U.S.A. following his leadership defeat.
If he cares so much about the party one has to wonder why he did not stick around and actively work to help the party win elections.
Still he could not even help his brother Ed win the general election so why would he help Jeremy Corbyn who is a socialist?
The Labour Party elects ruling bodies and cannot cherry pick decisions it likes. A ruling has been made. That is it end of story.
As supporters of Ken Livingstone and those who would prefer him hung out to dry fill the Internet with news and views they guarantee election losses in May.
The anti Corbyn brigade will somehow make any losses all about him and his supporters but negative news from fat cats within the party will cause untold damage
The NCC has made a ruling and we either respect that decision or give up. The other alternative and one that looks increasingly the only way forward is the party splits.
But hey I am no one just a retired woman who has voted Labour all her life, only joined the party during Ed's time, talked up the party at each and every opportunity, consistently criticised the Tory Party and who wonders why new young things in the PLP feel it is fine to disrespect and bully veteran politicians within their own party.
Is it more to do with who donates the most to the party? Who has bought their way in? He who pays the piper calls the tune and all that.
Good luck to Afzal Khan the excellent Labour Party candidate standing in the Gorton by-election. Good luck to all the excellent Labour Party candidates standing in local elections around the country. We have our work cut out particularly with Article 50 in mind and political opportunism from the Tory party and the Liberal Democrats and now our candidates have public party division thrown in for good measure.
If we fail in the May elections there may be many reasons including KenGate. And if we fail we fail some of the most vulnerable and poorest people of our country.
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