Joe Fontana’s NOT Twitter Account


I was interviewed this morning by Deb Van Brenk at the London Free Press after a short online spat with the City of London’s Communications Dept on Twitter. Basically, here’s the gist of what happened:

  • Yesterday afternoon several people, including myself, noticed that @londonsmayor had been re-registered by someone after former Mayor Anne-Marie DeCicco-Best had changed her Twitter handle to @DeCiccoBest.
  • It looked like Joe Fontana, the new Mayor of London, was the person tweeting (or someone on his behalf, which is more likely), despite a misspelled name on the account’s profile (it was ‘Joe Fontama’ before being changed to simply ‘Joe F.’)
  • @londonsmayor even replied to someone about the name change/handover saying that it was a simple administrative issue (which is true).
  • I noticed a tweet from @londonsmayor last night, asking if anyone knew where he had to go tomorrow (for the swearing in ceremony) and it CC’d @LondonComms. I thought this was pretty funny, and knew immediately that the account was in fact a parody/spoof.
  • This morning it was very evident it was a parody since a tweet was sent out saying Joe had been hit by something while riding his bike to the swearing in ceremony, even though Joe was being sworn in just as this was tweeted.
  • I called out the fact that it was a parody/spoof account this morning, and several people agreed. No big deal, I still thought it was funny and harmless.
  • @LondonComms tweets that they have reported this “hack” to Twitter.
  • I take issue of the word “hack,” which this clearly was not.
  • @LondonComms tries to reply to me, instead turning the reply into a retweet making it looked like I supported the City reporting the account to Twitter. I took issue with this and dealt with it via direct message, though others called @LondonComms out for it publicly — I appreciate the backup folks! 🙂

This led to Deb finding Orpheum’s website and getting my number via the Contact Us page. I end up being quoted in an article about the issue.

Unfortunately, Mayor Fontana is saying he has no intention of continuing to use Twitter after shutting down @JoeForMayor. This is unfortunate, and also a contrast to when he said, during the campaign, that he had intended to continue using Twitter to keep in touch with the populace even after the election.

It’s dumb, really, that he won’t continue to use Twitter to engage the public and connect with potential, future voters. And it’s also extremely shortsighted.

Thankfully the person that had registered @londonsmayor after Anne-Marie relinquished control is back on the beat with @NOTLondonsMayor. I’m really looking forward reading the tweets from London’s own version of @notstevejobs.

The Goal of Skepticism – Don’t Be a Dick


This is a terrific video I came across in one of my RSS feeds, done by Dr. Phil Plait. From the Dr. Plait’s site:

In July, I spoke at The Amaz!ng Meeting 8 in Las Vegas. Sponsored by the James Randi Educational Foundation, it’s the largest meeting of critical thinkers and skeptics in the world. Unlike my usual talks about the abuse of science that I had given at previous TAMs, this time I wanted to tackle a much thornier issue: how we skeptics argue with believers of various stripes.

This isn’t directed towards any group in particular, so please relax and just enjoy the talk. No matter what side of an argument you’re on, there are some very valuable lessons to be learned here. I think this talk is particularly good for anyone wanting to get involved in politics or activism at any level.

Open Letter to Al Edmondson (Updated)


So a story appeared in the London Free Press this morning (linked to below) regarding Middlesex County Council’s decision to replace 2-year old laptops with Apple iPads. I find this to be a waste of money for reduced functionality replacing very usable computers. I just sent this email to Middlesex Centre (that’s where I’m a taxpayer) Mayor Al Edmondson and received a response. See below for my original email and Mayor Edmondson’s response. Continue reading

If you could change one thing…


I’m looking for your submissions on this one. If you could change just one thing about London, Strathroy, Kilworth, etc. (wherever you live in Middlesex County), what would it be?

Please reply in the comments, and I would really appreciate it if you would throw in whereabouts you do live. I’ll get it started.

If I could change one thing right now, it would be that Middlesex County/London owned and operated its own fibre-optic network and Internet service provider (ISP) with no bandwidth caps or throttling policies. It would be called MLfibre or FibreLDN and you could get a 100Mbps down (maybe 5Mbps up for residential and 50Mbps up for businesses) for under $100/month.

So… what would you change?

Ignite London – A Terrific Event!


The first ever Ignite London took place on Wednesday night over at Gigs Grillhouse (great food and service!). It was a very interesting evening, to say the least. I got to meet more people, re-connect with some folks from high school that unexpectedly showed up (not on my behalf), and had my chance to stand up in front of the 100+ crowd to deliver my Ignite Talk about MuniFibre. Continue reading