back to article UK Home Office warns tech staff not to tweet negative Donald Trump posts

The UK Home Office is warning staff and contractors not to tweet or retweet negative posts about Donald Trump, in an email about its social media guidance seen by The Register. In a missive to the department's Digital, Data and Technology unit last week, it told staff "a quick look through just a couple of known personal …

Anonymous Coward

Re: It's a personal account, FFS

as long as they remove all references to their job from their social media profiles and activities, there should only be one remaining problem - you probably want to avoid expressing your opinion on issues where you have information that is not available to the general public

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Wrong approach

"The Home Office is more than capable of bringing itself into disrepute as such please refrain from doing so on your social media accounts" - Home Office contract, page 2, section 6, paragraph 8.

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Re: Wrong approach

Oui, tout a fait!

I wonder why this is even news ? You are a civil servant, you cannot openly ridicule a civil servant or politician of another nation ... you are free to do it anonymously, that is another matter ...

I just saw a Home Office tweet on the number of child refugees they let in in 2016, the home office is very proud to be able to claim that a nation of 60 million people let in less than 9000 child refugees in 2016 ... I thought there was some other nation which has a population of approx 80 million and had left 1 million refugees in, France, I think, is sort of in-line with UK (I think 1.5 times as many), however, and this is a big one, France feels ashamed of the poor performance ... UK, on the other hand, is proud to have helped!

The reality distortion field in the UK must be really strong!

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Joke

HMG become more like Lower Trumpton every day

Upper Trumpton is naturally inside the DC Beltway but also includes buildings in Manhattan and Florida and other places. These are easily found by the US Version of Trumpton namely, Trump Towers etc.

Postman Donald (where's me Troosers) Trump will be on hand to greet visitors personally.

You can tell it is him by the rabid over use of the words

Wall, Tremendous and Fantastic.

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Yes because people love being told what they can do in there personal life bye the government. Call me crazy but this just might have the opposite effect.

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well private companies have been putting constraints on what people can say about them in their own time for donkeys years so no need to go all anti-gov on this one. Indeed companies have sacked employees for things they've posted on personal accounts even if there is no connection to the business

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> it applies to all staff including contractors and temporary staff

Don't worry: according to other articles, the contractors will all be gone by 6th April.

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Don't use the words Donald Trump

There are plenty of other instantly recognisable synonyms based on his appearance, policies and moral compass. Just sayin'

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Angel

Re: Don't use the words Donald Trump

Just to clarify, are the following examples valid?

Appearances: Cheeto, The Rug...

Policies: Herr Trumpf, Overtwatterführer...

Moral compass: mmmhhh.. The Shitfan?

Am I getting it right?

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Windows

Re: Don't use the words Donald Trump

I prefer Tronald Dump. Seems appropriate somehow.

Where is El Reg's dump icon?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Don't use the words Donald Trump

Don the Fart and his Fart Followers.

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Only negative ones?

Surely a rational thing to do is to bar all tweets positive or negative. Otherwise it looks like you support him. Surely the HO don't support him do they?

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Re: Only negative ones?

"Surely the HO don't support him do they?"

With Brexit looming, there's not a lot of choice. We need trading partners, even ones who know we are desperate and will take advantage of that during negotiations.

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Re: Only negative ones?

We need trading partners, even ones who know we are desperate and will take advantage of that during negotiations.

Couple of Ozzie friends of mine spoke on their trade deal with the US a few years back.

One said "We wanted a trade deal with the US, we got one, now we want OUT of the trade deal with the US". Other one just said "we weren't careful what we wished for".

Having a trade deal with the US is like daily getting mugged and raped by the homeless guy down the road. You lose everything you have and still get screwed, and the who experience stinks.

(Maybe when they're done rebuilding the country post-trump they might be a much better trading partner, but for now I wish NZ gubbermint would stop trying to suck up to the US and look for much better and closer trade opportunities, other countries who would love NZ produce and would pay a premium rather than saying how bad NZ produce is for their economy and looking for ways to further shaft us)

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Happy

Re: Only negative ones?

@Kiwi. If it was about a trade deal, the way normal people think about a trade deal. But it's not. it's about everything else too, like with the TTIP.

Think about it for a moment, is there any country in this world that does not sell their products in the EU (including the UK), now I am sure perhaps there could be some island in the Pacific, perhaps a country in Africa that has nothing to export.

And then there are people who claim we have no trade, no products from China, the USA and so forth, but just believe me, I have seen American cars on the street, Chines tools in my home.

And then there are, of course, Brits who think nobody wants to sell them anything because of the EU, totally forgetting that trade is both import and export where importing stuff is just nice and easy while again exporting stuff is about actually producing something somebody wants to buy, and that the EU has, the bastards, prevented the UK to produce wonderful stuff for 40 years and now the whole world is waiting for all that new wonderful stuff and Boris is forced to answer the phone all the time. There was that time, in the past, when trade was about importing for "one" and then exporting that same stuff for "ten", are May & co still living in those times.

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Don't use Twitter

Good advice for HO staffers and everyone else too. Nobody gives a rat's ass about your whining. You're wasting your time and asking for trouble.

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Trollface

That was absolutely amazing!

"Good advice for HO staffers and everyone else too. Nobody gives a rat's ass about your whining. You're wasting your time and asking for trouble."

One of the best send-ups of a Trump tweet that I have seen so far. What, you meant it? Oh dear.

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Re: That was absolutely amazing!

Indeed, one of these days it's going to backfire on him. Hopefully killing Twitter in the process.

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Free speech?

I don't think the Govt can have it both ways - either staff don't mention who they work for and so should have the same rights of free speech and criticising nutters as everyone else, or they say who they work for and stick to the official line.

Or have two personal accounts of course.

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A. Stating in LinkedIn you're working for the Home Office is now unacceptable.

B. I've already dissed The RugHead on Twitter (or wherever), does that mean I now can't get a job at the Home Office, even as a temp?

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Anonymous Coward

Tell the White House...

If only someone would tell the White House

to stop posting tweets that make Donald Trump look like a narcissistic moron.

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God bless America

And free speech...

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TRT
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Re: God bless America

Oh the speech is free enough, but have you seen how much libel costs?

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Re: God bless America

Speech is free. Consequences are based on what you've said though.

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Pretty funny!

In the history of the alliance between the Brits and the Americans, has anyone tried to suggest or enforce something like this?

This isn't flattering for Trump that someone needed to make this an order. Were the negative comments that prevalent they felt this response was necessary?

Does someone not understand human nature.. or did someone anti-Trump suggested this response?

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Anonymous Coward

The US Department of Homeland Security is currently using software to scan social media accounts of people visiting the United States (with a low "match confidence" tool, as it transpired). This is just one of Donald Trump's “extreme vetting” methods in order to try and prevent possible terrorists from entering. .

So... if you tweet negative things about Trump you MUST be a terrorist?

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Anonymous Coward

So is this that special relationship that I hear about when comes to the UK and the US ?

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So it is OK

to tweet The noble Mr. Donald J. Trump is an honourable man. He always speaks the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

Free after Julius Caesar Act 3, Scene 2

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TRT
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Re: So it is OK

We all know what you get when a Trump follows through.

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I guess...

They will have to move on to expressing the equally unassailable view that our own Denizens are a bunch of clueless self serving wankers instead.

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Press Office

Have a guess how many of the above comments are actually planted by the press office?

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Anonymous Coward

Re. comments

All of them?

BTW ROFLMAO re. Drumpftwattenfuhrer..

In retrospect maybe sending that congratulatory Email to President-Elect Hillary before actually checking the results on election day probably wasn't a good idea.

Is the "Parallel Universe Defense" actually valid?

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Re: Re. comments

Is the "Parallel Universe Defense" actually valid?

Only if the tweet was posted by your evil parallel universe self, usually identifiable by a goatee or a Hulk Hogan 'tache.

Then again, with Brexit and Trump, we may have already fallen into an evil parallel universe.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Re. comments

[citation needed]

In other news, my time device is working well. For some reason I can't get any useful data past 21/02/18 at 7.02 am, any ideas why? Looks normal up to this date, no major events so this could be an anomaly in the system.

The worrying thing is that this is just under a year from now, should I sell my stocks in D-wave and Intel now and evacuate to the Alpha Site sooner rather than later?

Not sure if the event horizon is actually due to something serious eg an ELE or just a problem elsewhere, my device seems to be unique as someone else operating one anywhere on Earth would generate detectable interference.

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The moral is

...Keep your work and personal online existences compartmentalised. they're not saying "Don't saybrude things about Trump", they're saying "Don't say rude things about Trump from an account where you identify yourself as a HO employee", which seems reasonable to me. All my employers have had similar policies for the last decade or more.

(For the avoidance of doubt I think he's a dangerous, corrupt lunatic with fascistic tendencies and a menace to the world every second he's in power )

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Re: The moral is

are you sure?

I thought the fuss was precisely because they didn't want people critiquing Trump even from their own personal accounts, in their own time, from their own phones .. even if you were a contractor.

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Only idiots believe whats on social media

Sadly there are a lot of idiots in positions of power.

Trump has demonstrated that posting on twitter and possessing credibility are mutually exclusive.

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Anonymous Coward

Trump is descended from royalty...

...William of Orange.

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Anonymous Coward

Who uses their real name?

How do they determine the trolls from the real workers?

If I were to say that: "Trump is a vacuous twat", how does one know whether I work for the HO or Bob's Discount Tyres?

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It is plain common sense

It is plain common sense not to criticise regulators, clients or customers while indicating your employer.

If you mention your employer, if you mention your professional association, you are dragging them into it.

Much better to have a separate personal account for political comment, preferably using a 'pen name' (pseudonym) that doesn't mention any employer or any professional credentials.

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Big Brother

What year is it again?

Perhaps I should go fish out my calendar from 1984 and just flip it back to January every new year.

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Bit difficult to not post negative things about Trump

For someone who's only been in office for 50 days he's unleashed a shitstorm of either pointless stupidity or total self-serving material so its really difficult to post anything positive about him. Obviously you shouldn't be posting anything as an official or employee or even using your organization's computers but outside of work -- well, he's fair game. I'm one of the sizable majority of Americans who didn't vote for him; having got stuck with him I was prepared to cut him a bit of slack but his actions both before and since inauguration have been so ridiculous that he deserves everything he's getting, and then some. He's an embarrassment. I'm just pleased that all those low information types in the Heartland who put him over the top in the Electoral College are now so screwed thanks to the proposed healthcare changes that they might think twice about what they're doing in the future.

What you should be careful of is organizing anything on social media that could be construed as unlawful. You have to assume that everything you put out on the Internet is public and be prepared to defend anything you write.

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Re: Bit difficult to not post negative things about Trump

Dance like no-one is watching

Post on Social Media like it will be read in a deposition

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Facepalm

So they're not allowed to call morons out on their bullshit?

That's a great policy.

A really really great policy.

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Trump May be a Dick

But throwing words like "draconian" around when talking about your employees wish for you not to rock the boat is a bit pathetic.

You have a choice of working for them or not. If you are willing to take the cash from an organisation that supports the start of this century's coming of Hitler then fine, don't then pretend to cry about lost "civil liberties" And if the extent of your civil engagement is social media then......

I hear the same crap when I work with people who are on peanuts filling the same role as myself, either cry about it and look foolish or man up and get a new job.

People bitch about not having choices, people HAVE choices, but generally those choices mean having to actually do more than a strongly worded 140 word character assassination.

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Another nail in the coffin

Of the late "free speech". God bless our benevolent overloads.

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Sounds perfectly normal

As long as the guidance doesn't stretch to personal accounts (which should always come with the caveat "my views are my own").

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"This is just one of Donald Trump's “extreme vetting” methods in order to try and prevent possible terrorists from entering."

Except that it started under Bush and was ramped up a great deal under Obama.

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"Bush Started It"

That Bush started a lot of the erosion of liberty in the US, I cannot argue against.

That Obama turned up the heat (slowly, maybe getting to a 5 or 6), is also hard to argue against.

However, Trump, who spent his campaign decrying these abuses - and blaming them on Obama, has proceeded to crank the dial up to 11; and is looking for ways to add a 12.

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Use quotation marks

They could always take Sean Spicer's advice and put everything in quotation marks. Apparently things in quotation marks don't mean what they say so, for example, tweeting 'Donald Trump is a "paedophile"' is acceptable.

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