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Thank you to three readers, now please get involved

Posted on 19 June 2009 | 9:06am

This blog comes courtesy of three readers of previous blogs, whose ideas will hopefully spark debate and involvement from others.

First, thanks to Jane Appleton who had the idea of trying to make ‘Facebook friends of AC’ one of the fifty £50k donors to Leukaemia Research for the charity’s fiftieth anniversary.We launched this yesterday in honour of Henry Hodge who died aged 64. This is the second of what will be many appeals to visit www.justgiving.com/alastaircampbell to make Jane’s idea happen, and to have Henry posthumously in the donors’ list.

Second, thanks to someone called Mike who posted as follows a few days ago … ‘I must commend you and your site for allowing some of the comments you allow on here, which really are quite unpleasant about you personally, and about your politics. By contrast, I regularly post critical comments on the main media websites, which profess to believe in freedom of speech, yet which often never appear. They are vetted out. I have tried to post several in your defence on the Mail’s website but none have appeared. Then I wrote something critical of you – just to test it out – and lo and behold, there it was in minutes. They believe in freedom of speech, provided you speak what they want you to.’

Then someone told me something very similar happened to them when trying to post anti-Guardian points on the Guardian website. I was quite shocked by this. As Mike says, if any part of our society believes truly in freedom of speech, surely it ought to be the media. I have had people saying why do you allow people on your own website  to call you a war criminal or a murderer? The answer is that we allow comments that are libellous or offensive about me, but not if they are libellous or overly offensive about others. It means very few comments don’t get on.

Anyway, I’d like to hear from people about which sites don’t carry their comments, and what sort of comments they block. I also like Mike’s idea of putting up different shades of comment on the main sites to help prove his point.

Third, thanks to Denise Lunn, a youth sector volunteer who helps youngsters fill in CVs, and posted a comment asking if I would give advice of how to ‘spin your CV and stay honest.’ Her example was instead of saying ‘cleaner’, say ‘maintaining high standards of hygiene.’

I think ‘hygiene standards officer’ might be better, Denise.

So what else?

Bar staff – cocktails maker, good with people.

Paperboy – good early riser, experience of media.

Babysitter – extensive experience of childcare, trusted by parents with the most precious task of all.

Washing cars – started own business, aged twelve, in local community.

Petrol pump attendant – junior position in oil industry.

Shelf-stacking – retail assistant.

Football ground steward – active part-time in community policing.

Having parents – experienced in protracted and delicate negotiations.

Over to you, twitterers, Facebook friends and blog visitors.

And don’t forget, re the

Leukaemia Research appeal, that any donation, no matter how small, will help us get to the fifty thousand.

  • niccareem

    I last spoke with Henry Hodge, backstage at the Mandela concert in Hyde park last year. We had mutualjudge friend and I recall a couple of years back lunching with Henry and my friend and my good mate June Sarpong on the judges lunch table at Grays Inn. Henry was very amusing and a good sort. My thoughts are with his family. A life full-filled, but taken away far to early

  • Baris

    The CV spinning is great for people like me who have three months before going off to university! Now all we need is your tips to canvassing, that’d be useful

  • Ian Eastwood

    I will Pass this on to all my facebook friends who hopefully will pass on to all there’s etc etc This could get massive.

  • Patsy

    CV spinning – I did my work experience in the club shop at a golf club, aka ‘support team, professional golfer.’
    My sister worked for two months in an off licence aka ‘retail advisor, leisure industry, including Threshers.’
    Good luck with the fund

  • Poor Diddums

    AC you are linked to Tony Blair, the Iraq invasion and to the death of David Kelly. Ofcourse you are going to have a negative press. Stop snivelling like a silly little boy and face your critics with maturity. Good luck with your fundraising. Perhaps that will silence some of your critics as it is after all thoroughly decent thing you are doing. I hope it is successful.

  • AC

    Bloody hell Jane (Appleton)… have just had a look at http://www.justgiving.com/alastraircampbell. That really is putting your money where your mouth is. First you have the idea — then you put on 250 quid. I am really grateful. Interesting to see some of the medical team who looked after Henry on there – thank you for what you did, and for your contribution.

  • Wyrdtimes

    With out a doubt the BBC is by far the worst perpetrator of internet thought policing.

    They hate the word “England” almost as much as Labour does.

  • Em

    As I’ve mentioned to you before, The Daily Mail never publishes my comments which are never blasphemous or libelous. Of course, my comments are pro-Labour and pro-AC.

  • Alex

    CV ideas made me laugh but were genius, well done! “Spin your CV and stay honest” – sounds like the title of a good book…

    I hope your support of Leukaemia Research and in particular the Big Five-0 Challenge brings in lots of donations in memory of Henry.

  • Lee Hannaford

    Alistair
    When is a lie not a lie?

    Strange question I know but having read that Gordon Brown no longer uses the services of Damian McBride as was “almost” stated in the commons during PMQ’s. How then can it be released, by a reporters source, that Gordon Brown was recieving texts from Damian Mcbride on how to answer questions on the Andrew Marr show? Now having watched Andrew Marr on Sunday he is no great inquisitor (Mandelson was pretty much given a platform to pontificate from) why did he feel the need to ask for guidance from a person that he denies getting advice from? So is he lying therefore making him a liar or…Like I said when is a lie not a lie?

  • Paul Hodges

    Just a thought AC – justgiving is good but the CAF charity card / cheque scheme is better (greater % through put to receiving charity) – can you / Kate set up a route to donate to the great £50k effort. I’ll triple my (meagre) effort so far if you can!

  • Paul Hodges

    Even better anyone signing up a friend via cafonline.org/tellafriend can receive £25 each to any charity. If this goes viral, we’ll crack 50k in no time… (If all gift-aided we only need 800 sign-ups via this route!) The only con (?) to CAF is a minimum commitment of £100 one-off or £10 pcm.

  • Jane A

    @AC re fundraising – well, no point in me asking others to do what I wouldn’t do myself. More nudging others to join in soon!

  • Carl Gardner

    What an excellent comments policy. I’ve never really thought about my own comments policy, but I think it’s about the same as yours. I’ve only ever had to remove comments on the grounds (a) that they were spam; that’s actually been my biggest problem (b) that that they were libellous – I once had a comment that accused someone of sexually abusing a child, unbelievably or (c) in the case of one comment, that it was just nasty about an individual and homophobic. I’ve never had any nasty comments about me, but I probably would leave them up in the belief they reduce the commenter more than they do me.

    While we’re on freedom of expression and websites – what do you think of the Times’s exposure of NightJack? Was that really in the public interest, in your view? Do you think it was the kind of thing journalists should be doing?

  • Jane A

    Fathers Day – a request. As you probably know, we are fundraising for Alastair’s 50k in memory of Henry Hodge. Poignantly, this weekend includes Father’s Day. All of us are children, many of us are parents ; the devastation loss causes affects us all. Please mark Father’s Day by donating at http://www.justgiving.com/alastaircampbell. £2 from a hundred people would be wonderful. But surprise me – do more than that.

  • Flash

    Hmm. Is it true? 🙂