MP James Moore Has Blocked Me From Following Him On Twitter – I Wonder Why?

You’ve got to love it when you find out you are making a difference. And you know you are making a difference when after you write an article critical of a politician, the politician in question blocks you from following them on Twitter. Seriously. I’m a Canadian citizen, interested in Canadian Heritage, who’s Mother-In-Law is Poet Laureate for her city, who’s wife is a Canadian singer-song writer, who’s daughter is a Canadian photographer, who’s son is a Canadian videographer, who’s brother-in-law is a graphics artist/novelist, who’s sister-in-law is a graphics artist, and who has a lot of friends who are artists.

Oh, and I used to be a paid up member of the Conservative Party.

James Moore has blocked me from following him in Twitter. I think that I hit a nerve, when I pointed out that he is the real copyright radical extremist. I noticed today that I didn’t get any tweets from him, and went to take a look at his Twitter page. When I got there, I noticed that the follow tag wasn’t checked, so I clicked on it, and this is what I got:

James Moore has blocked me from following him on Twitter. Wonder why?

This raises some interesting questions. Should a politician be able to block a constituent from following them on Twitter? Should a Minister (for my American friends a Minister is like a Secretary) be able to block anyone from following them on Twitter? How should this be handled in a democracy (obviously in a dictatorship things are different – but last time I checked Canada wasn’t a dictatorship).

There are certain situations where blocking is legitimate. For instance if I had physically threatened him, James would have a good argument for blocking me. But I didn’t threaten him. All I did was point out that his definition ‘Radical Extremist’ was incorrect. Our argument is political. That I feel that he made a fool of himself in public, and publicly said so, may have upset him. That a fair number of people picked up on my argument, and apparently agreed with it, and spread my comments over the net, probably upset him further.

His biggest problem is that shot himself in the foot with that statement. Over 3000 Canadians disagreed with his legislation in the Copyright Consultation (those in agreement were either lawyers, or large American industry organizations, and since American Industry Organizations can’t vote, their opinion is meaningless).

In my opinion his best option at this point is to issue an apology to everyone who doesn’t agree with Bill C-32, all of whom he insulted by calling them radical extremists. Of course because this is his best option, it doesn’t mean that he will do it. I suspect that he’s really annoyed with me at present, and that I made the suggestion will annoy him further.

James, this isn’t personal. It’s politics.


Wayne Borean

Thursday July 15, 2010


11 thoughts on “MP James Moore Has Blocked Me From Following Him On Twitter – I Wonder Why?

    1. Thank you for posting this. I wasn’t aware that I wasn’t the only person he’d blocked. If he was a private citizen, I wouldn’t have an issue with James blocking someone that he didn’t like. As a Minister for the Harper government, I don’t think that this action shows a lack of judgment.


    1. Russell,

      Ah, but it was aimed at them. His wording was loose enough to cover ANYONE who opposed or wanted to change Bill C-32. It’s obvious that he didn’t expect his speech to be made public, and it’s even more obvious that he’s unhappy that it did.

      Remember Carolyn Parrish? This isn’t quite as bad as when she said into a live mic ‘Americans, I hate those bastards’. But while Carolyn ended up sticking both feet into her mouth up to her hips, at least she had a sense of humor about it – she asked Andy Donato for a copy of the cartoon he did for the Toronto Sun, showing her with both feet in her mouth. It appears that James doesn’t have Carolyn’s sense of humor. In fact it’s beginning to look like he has no sense of humor….


  1. I guess my thinking is that I went to look for “two groups” of “radical extremists”, and found something different.

    Since the government likes to talk about Copyright as if it were users vs. creators, I tried to find a ‘user’ side extremist and a ‘creator’ side extremist. I then wanted to find some folks closer to the middle that were only ‘radical’ and not ‘extremists’.

    I couldn’t find actual people or lobby groups, just anonymous online comments, representing user side extremists. The user side that is considered ‘radical’ from the so-called “Pirate Party” isn’t all that radical at all, and many believe it would simply be restoring Copyright to the way it worked in the past as only regulating public and/or commercial activities. As a creator I believe creators’ rights would be far more respected if these private activities were carved out of copyright, such that it was clear that infringement referenced only more realistically harmful public activities.

    On the side that some people consider the copyright holder side the radical is pretty harmful to a majority of creators, and the extremists that want an digital “opt out” of copyright seem to have had a major influence on C-32 as it includes some pretty extremist policies which are not only anti-copyright but might turn out to be unconstitutional.

    It was an interesting exercise to try to think of some other meaning to his words other than him being upset that someone disagrees with his specific political views. When I tried to find objective examples from the two “extremes” he tried to articulate, I really only found his closest allies.

    1. Russell,

      That’s what I noticed too – the only ‘Radical Extremists’ were the pro-supercopyright types, like Mihaly Ficsor (who doesn’t even seem to understand the treaty he supposedly helped write), the lawyers who work for the CRIA/RIAA/MPAA, and the organizations themselves.

      When you analyze what they say, it appears that they believe that copyright rights only apply to them, and that creators who don’t use them should have no rights at all. The Creative Commons is seen by them as a huge danger to their business model (see the ASCAP attack on the Creative Commons – Michael Geist covered it in his blog).


  2. He blocked me too, but interestingly he blocked an account that I never even even tweeted him from. That is, you have a Minister “searching” your name… and blocking you. That’s Orwellian and quite simply wrong. In China they search citizens for any references to history pre-Tiannanmen Square. That’s where the Conservatives are at… and it’s scary.

    1. Is this recent? Just curious, I am wondering if he’s still at it. Those I’ve talked to aren’t sure if he doesn’t get Twitter, or if he’s just a control freak of some sort.


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