, ,

(not satire – it’s the UK today!)

UPDATE – Good news. Perhaps as a result of all the negative publicity, Twitter has decided to reinstate the @UKJCP account. A failure for the DWP and a triumph for satire and freedom of speech.

After a FOI request, a DWP official has released a copy of the official complaint it made to Twitter which resulted in closing down a parody account on Twitter of the Department for Work and Pensions.

In the remarkable document, an official at the Department (Jon Woodcock, Brand Manager at Department for Work and Pensions) openly gives the reason for wanting to close down the account as “deliberate and malicious intent to devalue and criticise the work of Jobcentre Plus ….. UK government, elected politicians and the heads of large private sector organisations”.

Here’s the relevant section of the document, in which Mr Woodcock explains why the government wanted the Twitter account closed down: 


The document can be seen in full here (pdf).

Apart from the obvious concern that UK government officials are openly trying to close down criticism of government, politicians and business leaders – I’m also pretty shocked that Twitter agreed to the request.

So much for freedom of speech.

PS – anyone else surprised the DWP has a ‘brand manager’?


More info about the whole @UKJCP affair from the Daily Dot:

U.K. government Twitter accuses a parody of itself of being ‘confusing’


Please feel free to comment.