10/20/2014

every tweet can follow you, especially if you become a minister

imagine that you are a very vocal new media political hardline opposition figure clearly right of center and sometimes going into the grey areas of what is acceptable in the public discourse of today

well, at that time it is part of your image and you become popular through it which makes it even more interesting to continue and to test the limits even further 

how proud you are of your new media influence and the tone of your tweets and facebook posts 

but than you become a secretary of state or a minister, something you had never thought could happen at the time you were writing all that stuff 

and so all these tweets and posts are now seen as coming from somebody who is a minister or attached to a minister as secretary of state 

those tweets aren't put in the context of what you were but of who you are 

this is what happening to the Belgian secretary for asylm and immigration Francken who will now be under the microscope looking for the smallest indication of racism or unfairness based upon this 

the lesson learnt is that as a politician you either keep neutral in your tweets and make sure that those 160 characters don't come back to haunt you later on if you have another function (and as a politician you never know what will happen) or you make different accounts which you delete each time you have another function or responsability (saying that you have another life now or you depersonalize those tweets in a generic account - this would make Francken-in-opposition before and Francken-secretary_of_state now)

at the other side the bulldogs of the opposition are now learning at the executive levels how it feels to be attacked all the time for whatever even slightly connected to you but in which the attacker always gets enough media-attention to create some doubt about your intentions or behaviour or actions. 

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