Tom has kindly been keeping tabs on the Downing Street email situation, and he tells me that they’re a month away from a fix.
The emails I’ve gathered have been faxed to Downing Street, with the following message:
Hello, Downing Street Peeps.
The following are emails sent to email@example.com to with the promise of hand-delivery to Downing Street.
I’ve just been informed that the email facility for the PM will (finally) be replaced within a month. This makes any kind of fuss over this surplus to requirements, so I’m faxing the data instead.
However, at some stage, if it’s not too much trouble, I would appreciate knowing just why it’s taken 6 months to fix or build a system that can process maybe 250 emails a day, especially when so many of them can be safely ignored, addressed with a ‘Gordon Brown thanks you for your letter’ reply, or passed on to the relevant authority.
PS – I don’t care if you’ve done away with the old system, you jokers still owe me £2000… or, in lieu of that, the simple courtesy of acknowledgement.
That “maybe 250 emails a day” figure is what I’ve calculated as the maximum everyday flow of emails based on the number of people searching for ways to email Gordon Brown, the PM, the Prime Minister, etc. (i.e. how many emails they would get if everybody looking for a way to do it actually wrote and sent something, which isn’t at all likely).
I didn’t collect anywhere near that many of course, but the small sample I did collect showed me that the types of email sent to the PM have not changed over the past few years. All that was missing from my checklist was some guy having a back-and-forth with his MP before dramatically CCing the PM on their conversation (“A-ha! You’re in for it now!”)
Initially, I wanted to use the opportunity to send an email myself (probing for a response about that lovely Mr Draper, who claims their blessing), but it can wait. For a bit. Maybe.
Draper’s way is widely recognised as manufactured and fraudulent, but the following PR parallels may be of interest;
1. Draper speaking of himself in third person in his comment-free updates column. Elements of Drudge and Staines.
2. People from his circle billing him as a ‘stalwart’ when he’s been online for two bloody weeks. Elements of Dale, Staines and Hilton.
These people bluffed their way through and bullshitted their way past pretty much everything that makes a blog a blog, and fast-tracked their way to influence by the simple measure of declaring themselves important.
The only difference between them and Draper is that they’ve had more time to perfect their technique.
Allowing Draper rope is a risk.
(Unless of course the plan is to match the current circle of self-promoting pseudo-bloggers like-for-like in pitched battles of rigged arguments and manufactured outrage, in which case development is well ahead of schedule and you should be celebrating with boat drinks before the year is out. We’ve already reached a stage where every conversation needs two threads, because neither party can trust the other to host it.)
Turbulent Cleric – Thatcher was crass but Draper is the real villain!