RIP Tom Barry of @BorisWatch

I have just learned that Tom Barry of @BorisWatch/ has died suddenly at the all-too-young age of 41.

I’ve no doubt that his immediate family are in shock and have some serious grieving ahead of them, but if they’re reading this at any stage I hope that it will comfort them to know about Tom’s other family.

This morning I have watched a wave of sentiment on Twitter from friends of Tom and fans of his work on @BorisWatch and associated projects. What Tom did on an entirely voluntary basis was face up to some of the most devious, disingenuous and downright unpleasant people in politics with relentless good humour and the sharpest of wits.

Tom not only sought to stem the tide of bile and bullshit with incredible tenacity, but he did so in a way that gave strength and comfort to people who might otherwise let it wash over them.

This contribution amounts to so much that I draw some strength from knowing all of the good that Tom did with the life that he had, and how much of his spirit is likely to live on in others.

We may have lost Tom to the void, but part of me dares hope that it is inexplicably a brighter place now, despite the odds. I know this world is.


Tim Fenton: So Farewell Then Tom Barry
Darryl Chamberlain: Some thoughts on the passing of Tom Barry (@BorisWatch)
John B: He Was Watching The Defectives
David Allen Green: Farewell to BorisWatch
Dave Hill: A small tribute to Tom Barry of BorisWatch
Alex Ingram: What I learnt from following BorisWatch

This from Alex is spot on:

(Tom) seemed to live not only to find things out but to share them as widely as possible.

Tom was an insightful and informed data evangelist. He was the kind of rare person that Jesus of Nazareth reportedly described as ‘the salt of the earth’ and the ‘the light of the world’.


Posted in Humanity, Teh Interwebs, The Political Weblog Movement | 1 Comment

Elliott Johnson, bullying complaints and the Conservative Party

I will get straight to the point. My concern is twofold:

1. I am concerned that Elliott Johnson complained to CCHQ that he was being bullied, was suddenly confronted with an escalation of bullying because someone at CCHQ had leaked the details of his complaint to the person targeting him, and perceived himself to be in such a hopeless and isolated position that a tragedy resulted.

2. I am further concerned that the Conservative party will struggle to learn from the findings of an internal investigation with a narrow remit by a former party candidate and ‘aspiring MP’, and will risk the rights and well-being of others purely because they are concerned about their image at a crucial time when they are trying to portray a resurgent opposition as a bunch of bullies.

This is not wild speculation. I have experienced similar problems myself with CCHQ, and the result of their indiscretion and neglect was escalation up to and including repeated false allegations of child rape and suggestions from my bully that I should “drink bleach” or otherwise do myself in. Bullies often escalate when they think they are under threat, and even revisit this behaviour when the heat is off if they discover they have been able to use certain behaviours without consequence. The most recent messages (yes, this is still happening) assure me that if I will soon end up in jail or “topped” if I continue to ‘whine’ about it.

Obviously, I risk further escalation for daring to raise these issues publicly, but I do not see that I have much of a choice; I have raised my concerns about this privately with CCHQ, and they continue to be lackadaisical and dismissive about it, even now.

I attempted contact with the Chairman two weeks ago. I raised concerns about how previous complaints were handled and sought his assurance that any future complaints would be handled appropriately. I also asked for a suitable email address for concerned members of the public who might wish to contact him in confidence. Let’s deal with the response to the latter request first:

At present, if you think yourself to be a victim of bullying by Tory activists, you are advised to complain ‘in writing’ by email to

However, this advice is not publicised in any meaningful way; I only have it because I asked for it. There’s vague talk of email(s) to an unknown number of members of the Conservative party, but there has been no attempt by the Conservatives to reach out to potential victims outside of the party (which is typical as it is short-sighted), and there has been no attempt to make this point-of-contact for victims of bullying obvious and readily-accessible on the web, despite the recent tragedy. It would cost the Conservative Party next to nothing to create a single web page on their site asking for victims of bullying to come forward. Why doesn’t such a page exist? (Rhetorical question: we all know why.)

Further, any complaint that does get sent to will not only be read by the Chairman, but somewhere between six and a dozen other people who play an unknown role behind the scenes. You will also most likely receive a reply from a person other than the Chairman, claiming to act on their behalf, who will not give their last name. None of this will fill victims with confidence, even if they get this far.

Some might see this less-than-confidential channel as a potential security issue given the closeness of someone like Mark Clarke to a previous Chairman, and the allegations of leaks of complaints that have been sent in recent times. It is certainly an issue to someone who, for example, has been lured into a ‘sex act’ online and has been threatened with public exposure; surely someone who has been put in such a position deserves actual confidentiality?

There is also the minor problem that the present Chairman, Lord Feldman: (a) does not recognise that leaks/disclosures of complaints about bullying have happened in the past, and (b) appears utterly unconcerned that acting Chairmen including Sayeeda Warsi and Grant Shapps have been directly and demonstrably involved in such leaks/disclosures.

If Lord Feldman does not recognise these events and take steps to acknowledge and address them, then any assurance on his behalf by some-guy-called-Nick about complaints being treated in a “sensitive and confidential manner” is meaningless, especially when it is matched with a claim that “the Conservative Party has always taken any accusations of bullying seriously,” because it quite evidently hasn’t.

To be clear on this point: Lord Feldman has been sent an early draft of this article containing the relevant allegations and has declined to comment. The present Chairman cannot and will not deny that former Chairmen have been directly involved in the leaking of complaints about bullying to those who are alleged to be involved in the bullying. But there won’t be any investigation into that, because politics.

It is a pity that the present Chairman does not see any reason to acknowledge past failures and establish new protocols that are designed to better-protect victims of bullying and encourage them to come forward. It is a key reason why an internal party inquiry has no legitimacy and no hope of uncovering the full picture.

There needs to be an independent inquiry not only into this issue, but how reports of bullying have been handled under David Cameron’s leadership in recent years.

Please take the time to sign the petition in support of an independent inquiry.

Victims of bullying should be made to feel safer from the moment their concerns are first heard. They should not be made to feel less safe because the only person paying any attention to their complaint is their bully.

At present, there are many people – including myself* – who are past and/or present targets of bullying by party members, but dare not report the detail because of well-placed concerns that sensitive data will be dismissed with a sniff and shared without a thought. If the Conservative Party cannot and will not show that this attitude has changed, they will continue having a problem even if they set out with the best of intentions from this point on.

(*To make my own interest in this matter clear: I continue to be targeted by a bully because I dared to report bullying. This bullying mainly takes the form of a bully shouting ‘bully’ at me, but he makes other allegations of criminal behaviour such as stalking and monetary fraud, and other party members – including MPs who should know better – often join in. This is called ‘projection’. Grant Shapps became so upset with me over this report of his bullying that he repeated some of these allegations in his formal capacity as Party Chairman. This is called ‘displacement’. The party promised my lawyers a reponse to the latter behaviour ‘shortly after the election’. We’re still waiting.)

Please, please take the time to sign the petition in support of an independent inquiry.

UPDATE (25 Oct) – Elliott Johnson’s father Ray Johnson has called for a Scotland Yard inquiry and in the relevant article, the Daily Mail reveal that there are victims who are too afraid to submit evidence to an internal inquiry because of earlier leaks. By this stage, it is fair to say that CCHQ are actively avoiding the idea of an independent inquiry… but this same attitude of putting party image before principle is what led to this mess in the first place. It is also fair to say that Ray Johnson’s concerns about a cover-up are well placed. Lord Feldman already knows that they will not hear from all victims if CCHQ press ahead with an internal inquiry; this in itself is a form of cover-up.

UPDATE (28 Oct) – Read Ray Johnson’s open letter to Lord Feldman here.

UPDATE (19 Nov) – In a deeply cynical move, yesterday the Tory party banned Mark Clarke from the party for life as a bold and (they hoped) spectacular sacrifice ahead of a highly damaging Newsnight report. It is blindingly obvious that this was done in an attempt to protect the senior Tories who neglected the problem of bullying in their ranks for years. The senior Tories who have serious questions to answer are (surprise, surprise) former party Chairs Sayeeda Warsi and Grant Shapps… oh, and the current Chairman Lord Feldman:

Ben Howlett, MP for Bath, told Newsnight he first raised concerns about Clarke’s behaviour with party bosses in 2010 and had discussed Clarke with current party chairman Lord Feldman and Baroness Warsi, chair from 2010 to 2013. Mr Howlett said: “We’ve complained about him [Clarke] for a long period of time, and it’s not just him, it was people that were attributed to him as well. I complained when I was national chairman directly to Sayeeda Warsi as the party chairman, I complained directly to the chairman’s office when Grant Shapps took over as the party chairman and I have to say Lord Feldman has been well aware of all this, for a very long period of time.”

It should not be left to the media to investigate this. There needs to be a formal, independent inquiry into how bullying complaints generally have been handled by Warsi, Shapps, Feldman and every other Chairman serving under Cameron’s leadership.

UPDATE (20 Nov) – Things are moving very quickly now. The scandal has exploded onto the front page of today’s Daily Mail, the Tories look like they are lining Mr Shapps up to be next under the bus, and Feldman is rushing to lend the internal inquiry credibility with appeals for victims to come forward and offers of an independent review after the fact.

(Meanwhile, it has been rightly pointed out on ConservativeHome of all places that Feldman’s own defence about what he knew when is undermined by his serving as Chairman alongside both Warsi and Shapps.)

Feldman is forced to make these gestures because he knows that myself and others been right all along about the need for an independent inquiry.

One of the problems with the internal inquiry (that the Tories are not inclined to publish) is its narrow remit. What has caused this issue to be recognised as the scandal it is: the appearance of a series of witnesses now including a Tory MP (Ben Howlett) who testify that they too made complaints to Warsi and Shapps about bullying, only to be ignored and/or subjected to further bullying as a result.

It is no coincidence that this mirrors my experience, because this has been an institutional problem with the Conservative Party for a very, very long time, and that is why members, victims and public generally need and deserve an independent inquiry into how bullying complaints have been handled by Chairmen serving under Cameron’s leadership.

To hurry things along, I have chosen to use my own circumstances to press the issue. A recent statement claimed that the party is now willing to look into complaints as far back as 2007. I expect that they mean but do not say that this promise is restricted to ‘complaints about Mark Clarke and maybe his associates’, and so have written the following email to Lord Feldman putting him on the spot and make it public here so there is no question about the hole he has dug for himself:

From: Tim Ireland
Date: Fri, Nov 20, 2015 at 11:00 AM
Subject: My complaint

Dear Lord Feldman (and assorted underlings),

I am informed that recently the party “vowed to keep searching for complaints made as far back as 2007″.

So, will you be accepting my complaint at last, or admitting that your internal inquiry has such an impossibly narrow remit as to make it irrelevant?

I can demonstrate that both Warsi and Shapps mishandled serious and valid complaints about bullying. Further, I can demonstrate that both Grant Shapps and David Cameron turned a blind eye when it emerged that Jonathan Lord had done the same on a local/association level.

I have hard evidence to support all of the above, including emails, tracking from same, and a recording of Jonathan Lord.

Do you wish to accept evidence of mishandling of complaints of bullying, or are you ready to admit that your internal inquiry is only making limited inquiries that focus on the alleged conduct of Mark Clarke?

Also, when can I expect the response that the party promised about what Grant Shapps published about me in his capacity as co-Chairman? Your letter promised a reply soon after the election, but I am still waiting.


Tim Ireland

At present, Feldman’s options are:

1. Admit the internal inquiry has a narrow remit, but brazen it out anyway
2. Accept that the issue isn’t merely about the behaviour of some young(ish) activists but how complaints about bullying have handled by a series of Chairmen
3. Ignore a legitimate complaint about bullying that rings exactly the same alarm bells that everybody ignored when people first started complaining about Mark Clarke.

I’ll let you know how I get on.

Meanwhile, I will sign off for now by noting that the anonymous bullying targeting me has grown in intensity since I dared to highlight this issue, and a relevant author of that bullying has seen fit to quietly delete a tweet that made oblique reference to their knowledge of a letter of complaint that was sent to the Prime Minister through Grant Shapps in confidence.

UPDATE (28 Nov) – First up, this recent article in the Guardian is an absolute MUST-READ. It is an excellent and detailed piece on the circumstances/days leading up to Elliott Johnson’s death. Also popular today is Ray Johnson’s call for Feldman and Shapps to accept responsibility for their actions, and I must say that I wholeheartedly agree with his view that there is not only a need for an independent inquiry into the Tory party’s handling of bullying, but an independent body to handle complaints of bullying involving all parties going forward; the Tories aren’t the only tribe with members who put party before principle or otherwise mishandle complaints.

Finally, today I draw your attention toward Sayeeda Warsi’s letter showing that she complained directly to Grant Shapps about Mark Clarke specifically in January of this year and “never received a satisfactory response”.

Three things to note:

1. Warsi could and should have released this earlier in the previous weeks when her party was denying any previous knowledge of Clarke’s behaviour. She didn’t. This is an act of political survival, and not one of principle.

2. The only correspondence that Warsi can produce to show that she had expressed concern about Clarke resulted purely from her concerns that she herself had been targeted with some false allegations. There is no evidence to show that she acted to protect anyone but herself.

3. If Sayeeda Warsi regards her complaint to be valid, then she must also recognise that the complaint that I am aware of that went to her office about bullying was equally valid. But Warsi did not act on the body of the complaint and instead disclosed it to the alleged bully. The target of the bullying then complained to Warsi about this behaviour… and “never received a satisfactory response”. In fact, I can demonstrate through emails from Warsi’s office that this complaint was also disclosed to that same bully, quite brazenly.

Baroness Warsi has some serious questions to answer about her own handling of complaints of bullying and the political usefulness of her disclosure must not be allowed to draw attention away from that.

I have today emailed Warsi about my concerns, and I will let you know if she has any comment/regrets abouts the event I describe… or if she chooses to maintain a strategic silence in order to protect her own neck, just like her fellow former Chairman Mr Shapps.

UPDATE (29 Nov) – Sayeeda Warsi has received my email, and has no comment to offer, and no regret to express. Grant Shapps has resigned from the government (though he remains an MP), Lord Feldman is shitting bricks, and the Prime Minister is responding to calls for an independent inquiry…. by pretending that the existing party inquiry is independent. The audacity is breathtaking:

“The Conservative party has an independent inquiry under way under the oversight of a senior legal figure. I feel deeply for his parents. It is an appalling loss to suffer, and that’s why it is so important that there is the proper independent inquiry. There needs to be, and there is, a proper inquiry to ask all the questions and interview all the people who come forward and that will take place. There is an independent lawyer from Clifford Chance, who will oversee that process and make sure that it reaches clear conclusions from the evidence that comes through.” – David Cameron (source)

There is nothing new in what Cameron offers, and he is trying to spin his way out of it. I am appalled. Utterly appalled.

David Cameron is a weak leader of a corrupt institution. He knows there is worse to come. That is why he prefers to risk a media storm rather than commission an actual independent inquiry into how bullying complaints have been handled under his leadership.

UPDATE (01 Dec) – With his close friend Feldman under pressure to resign, Cameron has now offered to pass the entire investigation to law firm Clifford Chance (rather than simply have them review it after the fact) and twinned this with an offer to publish the resulting report. That it has taken us this long to get these minor allowances is a disgrace, and it still falls short of what is required, not least because of an evidently narrow but as-of-yet undisclosed remit.

Recent events have shown a pattern of negligent if not corrupt behaviour involving a series of Chairmen (ignore the complaint, leak/disclose the complaint to the subject). It is only right that an independent inquiry looks into the institutional failures that eventually led to the tragedy of Eliiott Johnson’s suicide, not merely the events surrounding the suicide itself. That means an inquiry into how complaints of bullying have been handled by a series of party Chairmen and others with similar authority operating under Cameron’s leadership.

It is also important this this inquiry be conducted by a public body, and not a private law firm with close ties to the Conservative Party.

UPDATE (15 Dec) – NEW POST: David Cameron’s not-so-independent inquiry into (some) bullying


Posted in Tories! Tories! Tories! | 2 Comments

It’s time for the Conservatives to take bullying seriously


The Conservative Party is a deeply tribal organisation, which might in part explain why outsiders are targeted with bullying so often, and why the party apparatus at a local and national level works so effectively to protect those doing the bullying. However, it is now clear that the problem is so pronounced that bullying happens within party ranks, and to such an extent that tragedies unfold before anything meaningful is done.

I work in a youth organisation where it is seen as vitally important that those in a position of responsibility recognise bullying when it is happening and take immediate measures to address the problem quickly, sensitively, and intelligently. In fact, bullying is taken so seriously that the relevant training is a requirement for all adults caring for young people, and I will stress here that we are not trained to wait for a complaint before we act (for reasons that should be obvious to anyone who has experienced bullying as a child or adult).

In political campaigning, passions run high and many young people seek to get involved, but I will bet you dollars to donuts that no such training is set as a requirement for candidates, campaign leaders, and/or fundraising executives. In fact, I am painfully aware of situations where bullying from Conservative members/activists has become rampant, but the Conservative Party have refused to conduct an internal inquiry or consider any corrective action because (a) an email was sent reporting the behaviour but they demanded a complaint ‘in writing’, (b) the target of the alleged bullying had not submitted a complaint themselves, (c) police had decided not to take action about a single incident reported to them in the course of the wider bullying, and – my very favourite – (d) an election was in progress at the time, and there were concerns that acting on the complaint might harm the chances of the party and its candidates (two of whom were directly involved in the alleged bullying).

It is sometimes the case where bullying is so out of control that MPs engage in bullying behaviour to intimidate their own constituents. I know of one incident where a constituent sought to report such behaviour to the Chairman, and they responded by simply forwarding the entire email to the relevant MP.

There has even been a recent event where a serving Chairman has been directly involved in bullying of their own constituent.

It is long past time for the Conservative Party to take bullying seriously. There should be an independent inquiry into how bullying complaints have been handled under Cameron’s leadership, and the public should be consulted as part of the process because there are likely to be many incidents that went unrecorded. This is the only way to determine the scale of the problem and the shortfalls of the system in place before recommendations are made for improvements that are long overdue.

I urge you to sign this petition in support of this proposed action, and share it with your friends.

Political leaders generally need to be more aware of what can go wrong when passions run high. The Conservative Party leader specifically needs to take responsibility for repeated failures to address the resulting problems under their leadership.

Posted in Tories! Tories! Tories! | Comments Off

And now, the national anthem…

I’d like to set out my stall by first pointing out that the Queen is the head of state (for roughly a dozen countries, IIRC), and not a bludgeoning device to be used for party-political games. It also needs to be noted that a few weeks before The Sun bravely condemned Jeremy Corbyn for ‘disrespecting the Queen’, they bravely condemned the Queen for allegedly making a Nazi salute when she was a child. As the follow-up talking points from a range of Tories revealed, this is merely an excuse to once again push the line that Corbyn is an far-left extremist who wants to overthrow the monarchy, piss on the flag, and eat your babies. If he had sung along, they would instead have called him a hypocrite. Anything to draw attention away from an uncomfortable PMQs for Cameron and the tax credit debate that’s unfolding.

I don’t know about you, but as an agnostic, when I am in church and the hymns begin, I remain silent, but stand respectfully. I’m not causing a fuss. I’m not contradicting or condemning anyone. I am merely exercising my right to not sing along to lyrics that have a deep and religious meaning and purpose that I do not agree with.

A similar convention exists with the national anthem in many countries, including this one. You can, do and should have the freedom to remain seated if you wanted to, but it’s polite to stand, and it’s perfectly OK to not sing along… particularly if you’re Scottish and the assembly is going all the way to the 4th verse.

If the false patriots of The Sun are going to bleat about British values and British traditions, they should acknowledge that Britain is becoming an increasingly enlightened and secular country over time, and everybody should have the right to express their views in any case.

It is perfectly acceptable to hope that Britain can move forward one day without a head of state who was born to the role according to the perceived will of the alleged god of Abraham. It is equally acceptable to decline to sing lyrics that actively pray to that alleged god for an indefinite extension of the status quo.

All of that said, if you wanted to fully exercise your right to free speech, I humbly submit to you three alternative versions of the national anthem for you to sing at appropriate gatherings or in the privacy of your own home:

1. The Inclusive Anthem

I wrote this a few years ago for the benefit of people of alternative faiths who also wished to voice their support for our Queen:

For spontaneity, ask every deity;
‘God(s) save the Queen’.
Brahma & Ek Onkar,
Odin & Zeus & Ra,
Yahweh, Baal, Arinna;
God(s) Save the Queen!

2. ‘God Bless My Underwear’

This is a variation on a classic that I wrote for a campfire songbook. It takes a minor liberty with the structure of the verses, but that is the least of its sins:

God hear my sacred prayer, please bless my underwear
Make them pristine
This is my only pair
Save me from wear and tear
Don’t let my bum go bare
God, keep them clean.
(da-da da-da da-da)
God hear my under-prayer,
Because you’re everywhere,
While you are down in there,
God, keep them clean.

3. The Air Guitar Anthem

And, finally, for those narcissists who see no reason to worship or praise anyone but themselves, I present to you the ultimate in anthemic self-indulgence. It is important that at the key moment* you reveal your air guitar and invisible pick with a flourish, assume the position (legs apart, hips forward), then begin pseudo-shredding while making electric guitar noises to the tune of ‘God Save the Queen’. With gusto.

I am a big rock star
This is my air guitar*
Wang-wang wahhhh-wang-wang
Wah wah-wah wah-wah wahhhh wah-wang

Thank you, Cleveland, and goodnight.


Posted in Christ..., Rupert 'The Evil One' Murdoch, Tories! Tories! Tories! | Comments Off

The return of ‘JPEG Baby’

Way back in 2003, on the same weekend that Jemini were bottoming out in the Eurovision Song Contest, I released my very first animation. It was a music video for JPEG Baby, a song written by me and composed, performed and produced by Koit.

I am proud to announce that this interwebs classic has a brand new video and is now available to buy on iTunes. The song and the video are both mildly NSFW, but not graphic in nature. Just a wee bit naughty.

I trust that those to you who are new to the song will appreciate its subtle cautionary overtones.

Buy this song now on iTunes!

JPEG Baby cover art

Posted in Consume!, Flash Music Video, Games and Objects, Teh Interwebs | 1 Comment

[post updated]

UPDATE (20 September) – It’s not often that I will simply withdraw an article, but there have been two major developments, one of which being that Twitter have finally taken the matter seriously and suspended the multiple sock-puppet accounts involved.

I will spell out the other development in good time, but for now it is sufficient to say that from this point on – by describing a risk that is no longer pronounced – this article risked doing some else’s dirty work for them. So it has been withdrawn, because I’m not an idiot.

An article specifically about the extraordinary behaviour that necessitated this article will most likely be published at some stage in the future. As you might imagine, I was quite assiduous about keeping a record of the relevant accounts and what their output revealed about the author (and those who made the mistake of associating with them).

Cheers all.

Posted in Tories! Tories! Tories! | 3 Comments

‘The British People’ vs. Tim Ireland

Late last year, an anonymous Twitter account appeared that was dedicated to publishing, popularising and/or attaching my name to some rather inflammatory allegations. I was very much the central focus of this account, but it also targeted several people close to me.

In the run-up to the general election, I announced my intention to stand as an independent Parliamentary candidate in Mid Bedfordshire, and the anonymous author literally begged me to do so, goading me with the promise of ‘exposure’.

By April I was formally approved as a candidate and campaigning in earnest, but shortly after the Shefford Hustings event, the author became increasingly upset that I had dared to run at all, and appeared quite concerned that I might petition the results. In fact, the author alleged that this had been my intention all along, and sought to use this premise to portray my campaign as an illegitimate or even criminal conspiracy to undermine British democracy.

A fortnight ago, the author began a 10 day countdown as the vilification on their anonymous Twitter account increased in intensity. On May 4th, the countdown culminated in the publication of a letter to me that they had written ‘on behalf of the British people’. It begins by accusing me of “(abusing my) privileges as a foreigner living as a resident here in Great Britain” before descending into a series of dark threats. The author simultaneously announced that they were going into ‘standby’ mode, ready to begin their Twitter assault anew should this be necessary in their view.

I have declined to so much as hint at the likely identity of the author, and I choose to allow them to carry the weight of specific allegations they make in order to justify their position, which is why they are not repeated here.

Other than the removal of two blocks of text containing those allegations, the following text is entirely unedited.

What I present first is the clear indication of what they are most upset about….

Your methods have often been sly & underhand. You’re running for parliament, for example, is a slight against our great democracy. You dared wrap yourself in our flag but all you wanted was to rile one candidate during the election campaign and, drawing on old electoral laws, have them removed with an “election petition” after the election. Well, that’s just not the British way.

… and then the main body of the letter, including the threats made by the author if I do not ‘take this chance at peace’ and back off:

Your lies have got you in a terrible pickle. At this time your plans are in tatters and your reputation has been incinerated beyond repair.

Note also that here in Britain every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future. We are a very fair-minded lot, you see. And so in this sympathetic vein …


Since you are now neutralized, you may now write your blog and tweet as much as you like henceforth.

But do so in a civilised manner which shows empathy for the people you are pursuing. Think of their real-world families, friends and colleagues before posting or tweeting. Do not smear. Triple check your facts before causing people pain.

And for God’s sake, stop optimising abuse about them on Google. That is just cowardly with a capital C.


Just as has been the case over the last four or five years, the resistance movement against you will crush you into the ground. And, let’s face it, you have suffered. It was your terrible decision to put yourself on a pedestal and look where it got you. You’ve lost almost everything, Mr Ireland.

Of course, cowards who are exposed (as you have been) will crack (as you have).

For every abusive tweet there will be a hundred resistance tweets returned. For every twisted post there will be widespread coverage across various media of your past misdemeanours. For every link you add to a negative post about one of your victims we shall link-build a hundred links to one of the many negative (but accurate) posts which exist about you.

We are more patient than you, more powerful than you, better-financed and far brighter than you.

We will continue to watch your behaviour 24/7. We will never break the law but we assure you we will continue to affect your ability to live contentedly amongst us. We will not let your lies stand.

This Twitter account, which has so successfully held you to account for the past months, is one of many which from today will lie quiet but which can be used again in a heartbeat; meanwhile, we hope, providing an effective, powerful deterrent to your tendency for vile behaviour.

The civil courts are another weapon we can use against you and your associates if you do not start behaving yourselves. Your many victims are ready to face you down.

Note that this offer is meant for you AND those weak others who have been manipulated by you. As their ringleader we consider that, within reason, you are responsible for the people and areas they decide to blog and tweet about.

Please note that as a group we will change laws to ensure the kind of anti-social behaviour you and your friends have exhibited over the last decade will become illegal. Harassment laws WILL catch up with technology, they will become more retrospective and we’ll bust a gut to see the necessary changes through.

Now YOU must change.

You call yourself a “caped crusader” against injustice in Britain but you have failed to grasp the reality. You are a particularly ordinary man, Mr Ireland, and you have caused a great many Britons a very great deal of pain trying to prove to the world otherwise. Time to burst the shriveled balloon of your delusion, Mr Ireland.

So, wake up.


Look in the mirror.

& Change.

Or we will come at you and your associates one thousand times harder than you can possibly imagine. We also know the law back-to-front and we will never once breach it. We will take you on once again so you are left shaking & pathetic; begging for mercy yet again in one of your pitiful YouTube videos.

Life is give and take, Mr Ireland. Continue to abuse us Brits and you will be drowned out. Give back good behaviour to the land that you have taken so much from and maybe we Britons will start to appreciate you a bit more.

So now grow up, Mr Ireland.

Stop & think.

You are politely advised to take this last chance. We offer peace. Take it.

For the record, I deny lying about anyone, I have not harassed anyone, and I do not recall begging for anything on YouTube or anywhere else. I did totally wrap myself in the flag, though:

Further, I would dare to ask the rest of the British public what they make of this letter, which is why I have published the bulk of the it here for all to see.

I would be interested in any comments on-site or off, but I request that you refrain from guessing at the identity of the author and/or their associates. Please also be aware that the anonymous author has in their own special way repeatedly sought to goad me into making a public announcement regarding my position on the events at the Shefford hustings, but I have no intention of saying anything at this time other than to confirm that the matter is under police investigation.

Cheers all.

[MINI-UPDATE] – I will be at the count for the next few hours, so comment approval will likely be on the slow side until dawn.

UPDATE (1 June) – The police investigation into events at Shefford Hustings has concluded without action, but there will be further developments; despite the anonymous threats detailed in this post, an election petition has been filed.

UPDATE (10 June) – Independent – Nadine Dorries faces challenge after general election smear campaign allegations: Nadine Dorries is facing an extraordinary challenge to her parliamentary future after a rival candidate lodged an election petition claiming she had accused him of being a stalker and a “dangerous criminal”. The Conservative MP for Mid Bedfordshire could lose her seat if the smear allegations contained in the election petition, which has been lodged at the High Court by the unsuccessful independent candidate Tim Ireland, are accepted by judges.

UPDATE (30 July) – Independent – High Court rejects attempt to unseat Nadine Dorries after legal documents sent to wrong address: An attempt to unseat the Conservative MP Nadine Dorries has been thrown out by the High Court after two judges ruled that legal documents informing her of the action were sent to the wrong address. Lawyers acting for Ms Dorries, who was re-elected as the MP for Mid Bedfordshire at the general election, successfully argued at a hearing in London that the election petition sent to her constituency’s Conservative Association last month was invalid and should be struck out… Ms Dorries described the Conservative Association office in Shefford as a “small office staffed by volunteers” which was only open on Monday mornings, the court heard. She was in London when the legal documents arrived and consequently did not receive them until several days later, after they were forwarded by her personal assistant. Mr Ireland, who is now facing a significant bill for legal costs, said in a series of Tweets following the ruling: “The High Court did not reject the body of my allegations against Nadine Dorries. They nullified a petition raising them on a technicality. What Nadine Dorries did today was successfully prevent my allegations against her being heard and her allegations against me being tested.”


Posted in UK General Election 2015 | 11 Comments

#votetim | New Campaign Video | Using Your Vote To Fight Corruption

I’ve made two versions of this video. The long version is embedded below, but there is also a short version for people who want the meat without the sandwich.

If you’re wondering about the missing detail about Nadine Dorries, what I can share with you immediately is this account of what happened at Shefford Hustings and further news that the events described in it are now the subject of a police investigation. Cheers all.

UPDATE (31 May) – The police investigation into events at the hustings has concluded without action, and I look forward to publishing further detail.

Posted in Tories! Tories! Tories!, UK General Election 2015 | Comments Off

EXCLUSIVE: Grant Shapps claims he met the alleged ‘1234’ hacker

The recent controversy about a Guardian story apparently linking Grant Shapps to a series of Wikipedia edits led me to review my email correspondence with Mr Shapps back in 2012, when I was seeking a statement or denial over the Wikipedia edits referenced in this article and his wider adventures as ‘Michael Green’ (latest). This began as a private conversation, and agreements were made about data of a personal/sensitive nature but (a) I made it utterly clear to Grant (twice!) at the end of the conversation that if he left it at the point that he did and the matter was not pursued through official channels, then I would be left with no choice but to lobby publicly for an investigation/inquiry, and (b) happily, I can do so without revealing any of the more sensitive data in our correspondence.

That was over two years ago. I apologise to the public for being so preoccupied in the months and years that followed (long story), but I’m here now and ready to lobby for justice.

During this 2012 email conversation Grant Shapps and I spoke about the incident at the 2007 Ealing Southall by-election, when his official YouTube account was involved in an alleged sock-puppeting incident. Grant publicly claimed at the time that his YouTube account was hacked, and he in part blamed his use of “a very easily guessable password”… ‘1234’ (source). Here is what Grant later claimed happened after that event, at the count for that same by-election:

“That 1234 thing was over 5 years ago, at the count a man came up to me and explained about using brute force to unlock the page. Apparently this is software that runs through combinations. He was proud of the fact that the password was quick and easy to crack and mentioned it hadn’t taken long. Although we discussed legal action at the time, after the campaign was over we never pursued it on the basis of time and cost.” – Grant Shapps

I am hesitant to cast doubt on Grant’s story because of the pressing need to call this unknown person to account (should they exist), but the simple fact is that Mr Shapps has “overly firmly denied” once too often, he is the subject of widespread mockery as a result, and if I do not raise these obvious points/questions in an objective manner here, then my own credibility will suffer, and that will harm any attempt to bring this unknown person to justice (should they exist). Police do not take kindly to people who cannot determine the difference between speculation and fact.

1. You can’t just wander into a count for an election. If you are not an official helping to conduct the count, then you need to be either (a) a candidate, (b) their agent, or (c) formally appointed by a candidate or a candidate’s agent as a counting agent. Somewhere, there is paperwork with this man’s name on it, or this unknown person (should they exist) has committed a criminal offence by giving false information.

2. The Returning Officer, the first person you would be expected to report such behaviour to, would have been present at the count, throughout the count. It would have been a very simple matter to bring this matter to the RO’s attention and make the key allegation against this unknown person (should they exist). I am left wondering why this did not happen, and if it did, what Mr Shapps can tell us about the reasons why it was not followed up by the authorities, because…

3. ‘Time and cost’ are factors Mr Shapps might consider in a civil case, but in a matter that involves criminal law, a crime is a crime, and it should be reported, especially if you are not the only victim. This unknown person (should they exist) strikes me as an extremely reckless individual who has sought to betray the wider electorate, and it is on this note that I leave you with the guts of my reply back in 2012 (I ask you to excuse my cynicism, as it was expressed privately at the time):

“re: ‘1234’… This is an unsubstantiated anecdote that is far too close to ‘a big boy did it and ran away’ to be taken seriously. Twinned with this is the fact that you are denying pretending to be more than one person in one instance while defending your pretending to be more than one person in another. There is also the not-insignificant matter of the account you describe involving at least one unmistakably criminal act. This is something that should have been reported regardless of any intentions about civil action. If you are going to sincerely put it to me that this happened as you describe, then I am compelled to lobby for an investigation or inquiry into the unknown man who sought to influence the outcome of an election with criminal act(s) and confront you personally to brag about it. Such a person, if they exist, has so little regard for the law that the matter would be pressing still even if it weren’t for the recent interest in computer hacking (see: Murdoch)” – Tim Ireland

So, there you have it. A mystery to be unravelled. I am uncertain what the statute of limitations is on any relevant offences under the Representation of the People Act (answers on a postcard, please), but the hacking allegation alone deserves a full and proper investigation, and it is long overdue.

Did an unnamed man make edits to a YouTube account under false pretences purely to make Grant Shapps look guilty? That certainly appears to be what he is implying in this recent statement about the ‘Contribsx’ Wikipedia edits. We could be looking at a pattern of behaviour here:


Posted in Consume!, Teh Interwebs, The Political Weblog Movement, Tories! Tories! Tories! | 2 Comments, I am in you

As many of you will recall, Grant Shapps (aka ‘Michael Green’) and/or his wife Belinda Shapps (aka ‘Sebastian Fox’) used to own a site called ‘TrafficPaymaster’, which was one of a series of ‘get rich quick’ schemes that Shapps used to peddle online both before and after he became an MP. The good people at had a curious philosophy about this product that was designed to cheat Google and its users: they figured that cheating didn’t count if you didn’t get caught.

“Shoplifting is victimless crime. Like punching someone in the dark.” – Nelson Muntz (The Simpsons)

Because Shapps was in such a hurry to do away with some of his sleazier sites, he carelessly threw the domain name away. It became available at auction recently… and I bought it.

So today I have brought the site back to life with a new purpose: to expose Grant Shapps as a liar and a bully.

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls… the chocolate-sandwich room:

I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed making it.

Cheers all.

Posted in Consume!, Tories! Tories! Tories! | 1 Comment