Swords drawn against tabloid hung parliament fears


Voters from across London descended on Parliament Square today to express their support for a hung parliament and displeasure with the scare tactics of the right-wing tabloid press.

In what was billed the “biggest rolled-up newspaper sword fight ever” by the facebook organisers. The ‘Flashmob’ protest was organised by word of mouth, through facebook, the email lists of online civil society groups Avaaz and 38 Degrees and on blogs, including this one.

Over 30,000 people have signed a petition calling for Rupert Murdoch and the British tabloid press to, “stop spreading fear and trying to manipulate how people vote.” Voters can add their name here.

After the event, Paul Hilder from Avaaz and David Babbs from 38 Degrees spoke to Left Foot Forward. Paul Hilder said, “people vented their passions, their anger at the fact that tabloid newspapers are really trying to drag down this election, drag down this country, scaremongering about the prospect of a coalition government where politicains work together”. David Babbs said:

“We’re not going to be bullied into voting out of fear for a hung parliament, out of fear for change, out of fear for opportunities that throwing the political system a bit up in the air might have. We’re going to vote for how we want to vote not how Rupert Murdoch tells us to vote.”

Watch it:

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  • http://twitter.com/houseoftwits/status/13368015469 House Of Twits

    RT @leftfootfwd Swords drawn by Parliament Sq 'Flashmob' against tabloid hung parliament fears http://bit.ly/c3a1iT

  • http://twitter.com/oliphillipspg/status/13368347471 Oliver Phillips
  • http://twitter.com/dacieroutten/status/13368458414 John Baxter

    RT @leftfootfwd: Swords drawn by Parliament Sq 'Flashmob' against tabloid hung parliament fears http://bit.ly/c3a1iT

  • http://twitter.com/byrichard/status/13368664681 Richard Harrowing

    RT @leftfootfwd: Swords drawn by Parliament Sq 'Flashmob' against tabloid hung parliament fears http://bit.ly/c3a1iT

  • http://twitter.com/paulhilder/status/13368955477 Paul Hilder

    RT @leftfootfwd: Swords drawn by Parliament Sq 'Flashmob' against tabloid hung parliament fears http://bit.ly/c3a1iT

  • http://twitter.com/sgodlum/status/13369701012 Sheryl Odlum

    RT @leftfootfwd: Swords drawn against tabloid hung parliament fears http://bit.ly/c3a1iT #38degrees #ukelection

  • http://twitter.com/oliphillipspg/status/13368409232 Oliver Phillips

    RT @leftfootfwd: Swords drawn against tabloid hung parliament fears http://bit.ly/c3a1iT

  • http://twitter.com/openuniversally/status/13368432856 Tom Corfield

    RT @leftfootfwd: Swords drawn against tabloid hung parliament fears http://bit.ly/c3a1iT #38degrees #ukelection

  • Michael GIlbert

    I’m sensing double standards. Daily Mirror telling people how to tactically vote to keep Conservatives out. Of course that’s left bias and therefore allowed.

  • http://n/a Mark

    Lefties strike again! Hypocrites as stated above by Mr Gilbert. Preach to the rest but when your own allies practice the same tactics you bury your head in the sand!

  • Stewart Owadally

    I’m a devout centre-leftist but have to agree with Mark and Michael that there is an element of double-standards here. Criticising Murdoch for influencing people’s vote is right. But then what about the encouraging of tactical voting by Labour MPs and more left-wing media?

    Ultimately, I think there can not really be any criticism leveled either way. Activists, candidates and leaders all try to influence how people vote just like the free press is entitled to do.

  • Will Straw

    I have to say that I don’t follow the double standard here.

    The quarrel isn’t about Murdoch / right-wing press trying to influence people’s vote (which they’re entitled to do). The quarrel is with the Murdoch / right-wing press scare stories around a hung parliament outcome. That’s why the term “manipulation” has been used.

  • Henry

    Vile smears aside, Murdoch isn’t even a British citizen…

  • http://twitter.com/jdg68/status/13444623265 Jonathan Guard