Thursday, 25 June 2015

Chief Minister Vows to Deal with Internet Abuse

EXCLUSIVE: Nicola Sturgeon says she'll purge party of cybernats as she pledges to crack down on trolls and end online abuse 

  • SNP leader pledges to discipline members who spread poisonous abuse 
  • Has vowed to clean up Scottish politics from online trolls and cybernats 
  • Said politicians who follow online abusers must stop 'feeding the trolls' 
  • Hundreds of offensive tweets have already been sent by SNP members
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who has pledged to discipline SNP members responsible for sending online abuse 
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who has pledged to discipline SNP members responsible for sending online abuse 
Nicola Sturgeon has dramatically intervened in the battle against online trolls by pledging to discipline those SNP members responsible for spreading poisonous abuse.
The First Minister vowed to help clean up Scottish politics after this newspaper unmasked some of the country’s most vile cybernats.
Writing exclusively for the Scottish Daily Mail, the SNP leader said the time had come to ‘send a clear message that politics in Scotland will not be sullied by this behaviour’.
She also called on politicians who ‘follow’ online abusers to ‘stop feeding the trolls’. A Mail investigation has found that 72 Nationalist MPs and MSPs, including ministers and senior party figures, have online links with cybernats responsible for some of the worst abuse in public life.
We have also uncovered hundreds of offensive tweets from SNP members who are responsible for infecting politics with threats, vile abuse and racist and homophobic taunts.
The findings come only a day after the Mail revealed that the First Minister engaged on Twitter with a cybernat who uses obscene language against women and has threatened two Labour MPs with physical violence.
After our disclosures, Miss Sturgeon severed her online links with three cybernats.
Yesterday, after The Mail handed a dossier highlighting cybernat abuse to the party hierarchy, the First Minister said: ‘The SNP will take steps to warn those whose behaviour falls short of the standards that we expect.
‘We will tell them to raise their standard of debate, to stick to issues, not personalities and to ensure robust and passionate debate takes precedence over abuse and intemperate language.
‘And I am also making clear that, where appropriate, we will take disciplinary action.’
In a clear message to her own MPs and MSPs, Miss Sturgeon added: ‘We must ensure that as politicians we set a good example and debate the issues, not the insults. 
Raising the standard of debate is a responsibility across the board and I urge all parties to do as we have done – to say clearly that crossing the line will not be tolerated. And then we should all stop feeding the trolls.’


 Lochalsh branch, sent vile online messages to the late Charles Kennedy, branding him ‘a Quisling’ and ‘a drunken slob’.

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