On the subject of Riley, the 17 year old arrested for tweeting threats to Tom Daley (18), I’m grateful to Colin McGovern for making me think by drawing attention to this spiel from Mof Gimmers, “Tom Daley Twitter And The Pitchfork Circus”, additionally this, from Matt Flaherty, and this, from Cranmer.
All boiling down to one simple timeline of events:
- Child tweets at personality.
- Personality retweets at not inconsiderable volume of followers, dissing child.
- Followers rail at child.
- Child hits out with threats
- Twitter Celebs join in.
- Their followers join in.
- Child tries to apologise, but it’s too late.
- Media gets involved.
- Child hits out further.
- Arrests ensue.
Just looking at his timeline alone that’s not immediately transparent. It’s worth noting in particular the Celeb involvement. These people are media trained, they have between them many award winning TV shows which they’ve presented or written they know better than a 17 year old nobody what works and what doesn’t work and there’s a number of them. There’s only one of him. Should they know better?
I’m not excusing what the child did or wrote, what he did was indeed wrong, and judging by some of his other tweets he does appear to be a bit of misguided child (racism, hate speech etc). But what the mob did, that was wrong too. And when I was a kid two wrongs didn’t make a right, do they now?