Because the media in Britain is now basically just a giant gossip circle repeating each other’s stories, pretty much every newspaper today repeats Michelle Mone’s tiresome publicity-seeking whinge about “cybernats” from the Mail On Sunday.
One of them is the Herald, whose piece contains a quote suggesting that Mone – who appeared to think that flitting from Scotland to England somehow got you away from the internet – does have at least some basic understanding of how Twitter works:
Now, we’re going to assume that by “the C word” she meant the four-letter insult, and by “the same party” we can deduce from context that she must mean the SNP.
So let’s just see if that claim stands up to scrutiny.
Oh look. In the entire recorded history of Twitter, absolutely nobody has ever tweeted the C-word to Michelle Mone at all, let alone in an abusive context.
But if you broaden the search out to any tweet that uses it and also talks ABOUT her – that is, tweets which Mone would never see unless she actively searched for her own name in conjunction with that term – you can find a tiny handful of examples.
Specifically, you can find eight in the last three years, most of which are from the past week (ie AFTER she started crying to the press about it) and only three in total of which actually use the term about her personally.
Of the three people using the word abusively, one identifies as an SNP member, and one of the others appears to be a Daily Record writer called Daniel Cole (going by the Twitter name of “Brucehillbhoy”) who blogs regularly for the paper about Celtic but does mention Nicola Sturgeon in his bio. He’s the only person on Twitter who called Michelle Mone a “c**t” before last week, and even he didn’t tweet it TO her.
Mone’s complaint was specifically dated. In the Herald piece she says:
On 22 May she told Daily Business that when she said made those comments she’d been “only aiming her attacks at 25 people who abused her and used the ‘C’ word”. If anyone can find the other 24 for us, we’d be much obliged.
EDIT 3.15pm: Someone (partly) has. After an extended discussion with a reader, we eventually managed to work out between us that for some reason, Twitter Advanced Search returns significantly fewer results than a normal Twitter search on an iPhone does. The results from an iPhone search, analysed for content, break down thusly:
Total tweets to Michelle Mone since 2011 calling her a “c**t”: 12
Number from anyone identifiable as an SNP supporter: 2
In fact it seems to be football fans who are angry with her rather than politics types – chiefly Celtic’s, seemingly for reasons relating to the club’s full-back Charlie Mulgrew. As for why Mone has chosen to blame the SNP instead, you’d have to ask her.