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To tweet or not to tweet?

12:18 UK time, Monday, 24 May 2010

Union boss Derek Simpson is still using Twitter despite a row erupting with BA when he tweeted during talks. When should you tweet?

People are increasingly using their phones to access Twitter during conferences, university lectures and now, vital work meetings.

BA's chief executive, Willie Walsh said that he was "shocked and angry" when he found out that Derek Simpson was tweeting while negotiations were taking place.

The Unite boss reacted by highlighting the importance of getting his message out: "If I have to apologise to Willy over twittering then I shall.... But I am not afraid of saying what is really going on..."

When is tweeting acceptable? Do you tweet during work? Have you got into trouble over your tweets?

This debate is now closed. Thank you for your comments.


Page 1 of 2

  • Comment number 1.

    Cant believe I am writing this but I actually agree with Willie Walsh.

    Simple manners never mind cofidentiality issues should preclude people from using mobiles etc during meetings.

    And by the same token, what do we really expect from Unite - the union who care so little about BA passengers that they time the strikes to cause the most disruption. Dont they realise that these passengers are the people who pay their members wages....

  • Comment number 2.

    You shouldn't 'tweet'. It's a pathetic self-aggrandizing system designed for people who have desperate urges to get noticed...and to mass-market garbage.

  • Comment number 3.

    It's impolite. If he wanted to give his Twitter followers his version of events, then there would have been ample time afterwards.

  • Comment number 4.

    Is the BBC being sponsored by twitter? It's just a rubbish blogging service.

  • Comment number 5.

    Tapping away on your mobile or blackberry would be unacceptable in every business meeting i've ever been to, whether you were 'tweeting' or not.

    In fact modern business etiquette generally requires mobiles to be switched off before meetings commence.

  • Comment number 6.

    It sounds like a tactic to get things going Derek Simpson's way. "Behind closed doors" is where things should stay until negotiating is done. Thing are said durig negotiation that aren't necessarily the done deal. Releasing what he did is pretty much makng a private meeting public.

  • Comment number 7.

    And this guy holds a high-ranking post in a Union? I'd expect better sense from a child.

    Obviously his own ego was far more important to him than representing his members.

    But then what do we expect these days.

  • Comment number 8.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 9.

    You should certainly not be emailing, tweeting or whatever, when you are supposed to be enagaged in negotiations to settle a dispute. Completely unprofessional and unacceptable.

  • Comment number 10.

    Nothing new here. Before the electronic age people used to pass notes to one another; before Twitter emails and IMs were popular methods of indiscretion. The technology might change but the motivation is age-old.

    I'm afraid that on this I agree with David Cameron and his opinion of what too many 'tweets' make. It annoys me no end that those who refuse to commit themselves to this technology and the likes of Sheepbook are increasingly being disenfranchised online as it is assumed (particularly by the BBC and other parts of the mainstream media) that everyone wants to partake when in fact the recent protests against the latter suggest otherwise.

  • Comment number 11.

    I have an open Twitter account where I have 140 characters to say whatever I want to say, theres only a few followers who get my sense of humour but the fact I know that Tweets can be seen by those all around the World sees me refrain from saying anything that may be taken seriously.

    Last year I was part of a social gathering where the one and only thing we had in common was the fandom of a celebrity figure, in time because my views were different I was systematically bullied and harassed, I said something to this effect on Twitter and saw how one of the antagonists had retweeted this - since then I watch what I Tweet about nad dont wear my Heart on my sleeve, I've obviously learnt my lesson there.

    But there are leading public figures, a certain very well known Hollywood a-lister let the World know that he had split up with his long time partner a few months back and the Tweets after that one were written with extreme Heartbreak - sometimes, just sometimes, its best to not Tweet when a Pad of paper and a pen will serve better and wont be seen by upon millions of people.

  • Comment number 12.

    I don't use Twitter personally.

    I read something in the New of the World yesterday about a bloke who discovered on Twitter that he'd been rejected for a job due to the interviewer tweeting something cruel in mocking the fact that he'd already decided to reject him and how he "took pleasure" in telling him he hadn't got the job. Adding that he'd tweet what the bloke’s reaction would be.

    That's an example of bad twittering. Mind you the internet often brings out the worst in people in my experience.

  • Comment number 13.

    Derek Simpson's actions were entirely unprofessional and may have scuppered any chance of brokering a deal especially given the subsequent arrival of SWP members. The strike meanwhile appears to be losing support among members and is gaining little sympathy from the public. The industrial action will further damage the airline and may force further redundancies. Seeing the trouble caused at British Airways, former staff may also find difficulty in obtaining employment with other airlines in the future when and if BA finally goes into receivership and puts all staff on the dole.

  • Comment number 14.

    I post my facebook status using text message at work but never in meetings or lectures, but I also don't have work colleagues as friends to get caught out by this. Working in an office where the boss is a tyrant (the yelling at you in front of colleagues kind) being able to text a message saying "having a bad day" or something relieves the stress levels a bit which is better than ending up in tears in the office or hiding in the toilets! However if I did this more than once a day I would be worried about it as it might become a habit.

  • Comment number 15.

    Totally agree with comments #1-4

    Mr. Simpson was completely rude and displayed no manners at all. I would be absolutely disgusted if someone was doing that while in a meeting or conference and I'm sure myself or work colleagues would be formally warned if we did something like that (We are not even allowed mobile phones on our desks).

    I personally do not understand 'Tweeting' and have never used it. I don't really care when celebrities are stuck in traffic.

  • Comment number 16.

    I cannot fathom out why tweeting has caught on in such a big way? Surely it is a childish pursuit which will clutter up the Internet and either self-destruct or if not be severely regulated?

  • Comment number 17.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 18.

    I feel outraged that a man of resposibilty such as the Unite representative,should behave in such a fashion and the people responsible for giving him his position should make haste to remove him.They should be wondering what else he secretly does and whether he is the most suitable person for the job.We need a few less people of this calibre but maybe now when jobs in the public service sector could be at a premium,a more sensible person could be willing to fill that role.Cometh the times,cometh the man.

  • Comment number 19.

    What's tweeting?
    What's twitter?
    Any connectionwith twerp?

  • Comment number 20.

    Isn't it time that Unite members reviewed the employment contracts/salaries and benefits of Simpson and Woodley? After all, Unite is a democratic union and all subscriptions by members make them the boss of T & W, or is that S & W?

    Willie Walsh has played the long game before/since talks with BA amalgamating with Iberia and the black hole in BA pensions?

    Either way - all three egos, from both camps, will enjoy some pretty good pensions? Who knows? Or do we .... ?

  • Comment number 21.

    It is just rudeness and ignorance to use electronic devices while talking to others. Perhaps I am old fashioned, but it does seem manners have disappeared.

  • Comment number 22.

    You should only tweet when your twoken two.

  • Comment number 23.

    I've never understood it really. I value my privacy, why would I tell the world what I'm doing every minute of everyday..? And why would they find it interesting?

  • Comment number 24.

    Like most good things, Twitter is best used in moderation.

    For Mr Simpson to be tweeting during the talks, it gives off the impression that he isn't paying full attention to the important matters at hand and would prefer to continue to wind up BA and Mr Walsh.

    One thing is for sure, if I were an employee of BA and Mr Simpson was meant to be representing me in the dispute, I'd be more than a little annoyed at the way in which he is conducting himself. Anyone with a brain can tell you that the way to solve a dispute is not to do as much as possible to frustrate the other party more, and even more importantly it is to keep your eye on the ball. What exactly did Mr Simpson miss when he was busy tweeting? We've all sent a text, email or something else during a tv show, but can we all say we know exactly what happened during the time we were looking down at our mobile?

  • Comment number 25.

    Is Twitter a public listed company on the stock exchange? If so, what's the share price?

    If not listed - then there could a strong chance - Tweet your broker immediately - any publicity, is good publicly? tweet, tweet, wink, wink?

  • Comment number 26.

    All this shows that the Union are not taking this dispute seriously enough. Mr Simpson was obviously surplus to requirements at these talks. The outcome of his stupidity was misery for thousands of travellers, possible bankruptcy for BA and unemployment for the members of his union - and the rest of BA's workforce. And how were the inappropriately named Socialist Workers(?) able to summon so many "protesters" at such short notice?

  • Comment number 27.

    But, surely, isn't Twittering simply a messaging system for morons.

    Either the publicized contents are self indulgent rubbish, utterly irrelevant trivia, incomprehensible or just utterly pointless.

    Why does any intelligent person wish to share their most pointless and irrelevant thoughts with others - and are any others really interested.

    No more that mindless electronic graffiti.

  • Comment number 28.

    There's a time and a place to use Twitter, and during important union talks is not the right time to be tweeting. There would have been plenty of time for Mr. Simpson to state his version of events afterwards.

  • Comment number 29.

    Employees should not be allowed to tweet during working hours, or while in the building - even when on an official break.

    The SECURITY implications are huge with tweeting for everyone:
    you the employer
    you the employee
    you the customer
    you the government and all aspects and departments within government.

    Tweeting is NOT texting folks - if you tweet - IT'S ALL OUT THERE, you lemmings - GET WITH THE PROGRAM, WAKE UP, GROW UP AND GET REAL at what you expose yourself to?

  • Comment number 30.

    It was unprofessional and they all know it. For Walsh to make too much of it is also unprofessional.

  • Comment number 31.

    Definately not in discussions of this nature....The man is an total idiot and an embarrassment to the trade unions that he has degraded in this way. Plus he has given more credibility to Willie Walsh and his team.
    He should have been given the push immediately. What a prat!

  • Comment number 32.

    Is that multi-tasking or just plain arrogant ignorance?
    This is a bloke not a woman, like me, so option one is out!
    At work, you are supposed to work – hence the money – is he to be docked?
    So this guy is a prize twit (that’s what they call they banal ramblings, isn’t?)

  • Comment number 33.

    If Simpson prefers to leak all the details of the meetings, then perhaps Unite and BA should hold the meeting son TV instead? That way we would get fair assessment of who's saying what without the ridiculous propoganda.

  • Comment number 34.

    Ask yourself "Need I be here?" If you can tweet or text in a meeting? Someones elses turn to talk- show them the courtesy of not being a distraction. Unless of course you have an ulterior motive....Twitter from the Noun TWIT!

  • Comment number 35.

    Passed through some beautiful countryside in the sun on a train inspiring stuff young kid spent the whole time texting and twit-ering. NO sense of awe its just sad.. Whatever.

  • Comment number 36.

    I fly the atlantic regulary, on landing so many clutch the crack berry like a smoker on a tube train. Just landed will be there in an hour- checking email on the walk in. Give me some peace.
    BUT its only at heathrow NOT the other end!!!!!

  • Comment number 37.

    I'm not surprised talks keep breaking down, if the person supposed to be doing the negotiating isn't paying attention, and is fiddling with his phone instead. If he was my union rep, I'd give up now. Sack him.

  • Comment number 38.

    I really do wish the BBC would stop advertising this ultimately useless service designed for egomaniacs and the technologically illiterate.

    Yes, if you make a stupid account with your own stupid name others will be able to see the stupid lines of stupid text you stupidly put there.

    And if you stupidly do something beyond stupid, you might just get into some less-than-silly bother.


  • Comment number 39.

    Interesting that in all the other examples the Beeb gives of inappropriate Tweets, the culprit lost their job. Derek Simpson just offers to apologise (by Tweet).

    And as I understand it, the sticking-point is now that the union wants employees legitimately dismissed, reinstated. If their dismissal was wrong, what's wrong with an employment tribunal? BA's strikers seem determined to destry a once great company.

    One law for the unions, another for the rest of us.

  • Comment number 40.

    As a member of UNITE I am appalled by the actions of Derek Simpson. So much so that I am seriously considering a move to another union. This is what gets Unions a bad name.

  • Comment number 41.

    This proves Derek Simpson is a right TWITter

  • Comment number 42.

    People have become stupid, with technology.

  • Comment number 43.

    I would think it is a question of good manners-does everyone speak with their mouth full? Do you allow mibiles to go off during funeral services? There is a time and place for most things-sadly some folks do not know this.

  • Comment number 44.

    There is a time and place for everything. I would have thought that Derek Simpson was more sensible.

  • Comment number 45.

    Will he tweet apologises to all the staff of BA when he and his union bring down the airline .

  • Comment number 46.

    You have to reflect that the idiotic, or immature behaviour of Simpson says all too much about all too many Union honchos.

    Looking at Simpsons barely articulate ramblings on TV, especially as compared with the fluent Woodley, makes you wonder if he ever held down a proper job.

    Sadly, in my long experience, all too many Union 'leaders' got there by default and worked their way up by pleading 'union business' while being subsidised by their hard working colleagues.

    'Them as can't - teach, them as can't teach - lecture - them as can't (or won't) work become a Union activists'.

  • Comment number 47.

    Is he 15 years old?

    Posting the private details of serious negotiations on a publicly accessible website which is nothing more than a frivolity shows a complete lack of wisdom and maturity.

    Perhaps he thought using a modern communication medium would win him some point with the younger generation, but its a serious miscalculation and a bit of an own goal.

    Put your phone down and get on with negotiating. Peoples jobs, holidays and livlihoods depend on it!

  • Comment number 48.

    Well common sense isn't fashionable any more, these are important negotiations and Derek Simpson has shown he is treating them like a joke, what's wrong with Tweeting when talks are finished? What did he think he would gain by not waiting for the end of the talks, given that they were on the eve of the strike?

    You could be forgiven for thinking he wanted the strike to go ahead whatever he was saying, online or to the press.

  • Comment number 49.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 50.

    I agree with many others - you simply should not be operating your mobile phone in a meeting - it begs the question who was chairing the meeting? - when I chair meetings I will not start until ALL phones are OFF - otherwise these poeple are effectively saying my phone calls are more important than the meeting. If that is the way they feel, then they should not be attending the meeting in the first place.


    Trevor Williams

  • Comment number 51.

    Just further evidence of the contempt with which Unite are treating the whole process. They seem to change their mind on what the dispute is about on a daily basis, have set up a childish website called Brutish Airways that can only serve to damage the name, and now this when the talks are supposed to be confidential to allow a chance for progress.

    The whole point of the confidentiality is supposed to be to allow parties to be honest to find common ground and red lines away from media posturing and then find a way forward. If Unite are going public with a running commentary then this shows they are not treating this process seriously, and cannot be trusted.

  • Comment number 52.

    In the meetings I have attended it is common practice for participants to look at e-mails and respond to them during quieter parts of the meeting. If you are in a meeting for several hours, you do not need to be engaged all the time.

  • Comment number 53.

    What on earth was Mr Simpson thinking?? He was completely wrong to be posting messages on Twitter while he was supposed to be negotiating for his members. It appears that he is far more concerned with how he is viewed than with keeping his members in jobs.

    Personally, I am getting really fed up of UNITE using the withdrawl of staff perks as an excuse to bring BA to it's knees. Does Mr Simpson & his cohorts not see that if BA goes down the toilet so do his members jobs & his income. It seems aparent that the unions really are not interested in the long term best interests of their members. Bring back Maggie....she knows how to deal with unions.

  • Comment number 54.

    It's like dealing with a toddler, isn't it? Leave that alone. Shan't. Social networking seems to have reduced many people's idea of responsible behaviour to zero, and the ability to treat confidential issues as such seems beyond their comprehension.

  • Comment number 55.

    The ONLY Tweet I'm interested in is the sound from a bird!

  • Comment number 56.

    This is the kind of behaviour you're expect from the work-shy commies.

    I'm only surprised that the Union hasn't made twitter a worker's right yet (including an extra tea break whilst you tweet).

    The sooner these Unions are cleansed from our society in the general sweep-up of the corrosive left wing, the better.

  • Comment number 57.

    I attend many meetings, several of which as Chair. I find it the height of rudeness those people who insist on sitting behind a screen during the course of the meeting. They are usually the people who contribute the least - probably because they spend their time fiddling with their laptop! Common courtesy should apply and people should refrain from bringing their toys to play with!

  • Comment number 58.

    Can you imagine the negative comments from 'untie' if Willie Walsh was 'tweeting' during a meeting...

    It's rude but not unexpected from these people.

  • Comment number 59.

    If I was on the other side of the negotiating table from this person I simply wouldn't trust him in any further negotiations, so he'd be out of the equation.

  • Comment number 60.

    Plain good manners means that when you are in a meeting, you concentrate on that meeting.

    Why does anyone think it's acceptable to read e-mail or engage in wibble on social networking sites when you are engaged in a meeting? Would you read a book? Or hold a conversation on the telephone? Anything more than the odd doodle in the margins of the agenda is just plain rude.

    And that's before you get on to the matter of confidentiality! (Although I do remember two sweet blokes on a train in south east England who thought they were safe discussing a highly confidential deal by talking about it in Welsh! Their faces when I made a passing comment in said language as I left....:)

  • Comment number 61.

    I think it's extremely unacceptable and unprofessional for this Union boss to sit there Twittering while in an extremely important meeting.

  • Comment number 62.

    As a civil servant I am always surprised by the number of managers and departments there are in the service. If all the tax departments for instance were abolished and one single tax table introduced we could save billions. For instance instead of a basic pension the pension tax credit and the heating allowance etc were all paid in one payment based on what each person put into the system only one form needs to be filled in. Anyone who has not contributed would get a basic allowance to cover all basic needs calculated on a level pegging. Single parents who are unable to work should be given vouchers for childrens cloths, food tokens to cover all their needs and housing of good standard but with a fixed rent allowance so if they want a bigger house they have to contribute. I fully support helping all those in need but instead of them having to claim several benefits they should get one payment from one department that is sufficient to cover all their needs. So many departments and forms are so unnecessary and costly.

  • Comment number 63.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 64.

    1. At 12:46pm on 24 May 2010, Bangla Shields wrote:

    Cant believe I am writing this but I actually agree with Willie Walsh.

    I know the feeling.
    He's still a right [expletive delteted] though isn't he?

  • Comment number 65.

    This isn't a tweet or not to tweet question. It is an integrity question. The union representative concerned should have kept details of the negotiations secret as is norm in such situations. He could have leaked via newspapers, email or postcards to his granny. Either way he has broken a trust

    This seems to be the norm nowadays, to leak and spill the beans. This government saw to it that budget details and the 'speech were leaked. No culture change there then!!

  • Comment number 66.

    Game players play! It is what they do why all the surprise? Eventually the workers will drift back to work much poorer and wondering why they bothered!

  • Comment number 67.

    I would like like to echo some of the comments made on this page about the unhealthy relationship that the BBC seems to have with Twitter. I'm not sure if this was meant to be ironic but the text below is copied straight from a twitter 'advert' on a BBC news page reporting on the BA strike and specifically BA travel perks (page is here
    text says:
    Say goodbye to worktime boredom. Follow us [i.e. the BBC] on Facebook or Twitter'
    This follows one commentator on the Today programme this morning stating that 1 million public sector jobs should be cut.
    Is this really the official attitude of the BBC or is this a poor taste joke? Please note BBC, you may be immune from this recession but the rest of us aren't! If we are looking at public sector cuts I really think we could start looking at the fat BBC license fee!

  • Comment number 68.

    Tweeting is for twits!

  • Comment number 69.

    Tweeting during negotiations. Fantastically rude, unprofessional and counter productive. Keeping people informed? Really!

  • Comment number 70.

    Union boss Derek Simpson was wrong to Twitter during talks. I can only compare this to the situation where someone is speaking, but you're not really listening; rather, you're preparing your answer or speaking to someone else.
    It's rude and unprofessional.
    If people are increasingly using their phones to access Twitter during conferences, university lectures and now, vital work meetings, I say again it's not acceptable. It's rude and it's unprofessional. How would you like it if YOU were the speaker?
    BA's chief executive, Willie Walsh said that he was "shocked and angry" when he found out that Derek Simpson was tweeting while negotiations were taking place. I would be too.
    The Unite boss reacted by highlighting the importance of getting his message out. Well Unite Boss, Willie Walsh had a message to get out too, and apparently you didn't want to give his message your entire attention.
    So, go and do the right thing: Apologize.

  • Comment number 71.

    Use of a mobule phone or similar should be banned in meetings or company. Even whenshopping there is nothin more annoying than different mobile phones going off and people answering no matter who they are inconveniencing. I am well aware that both ordinary respect and self respect has disappeared but perhaps basic manners should rule here never mind privacy. Anybody if urgent can have a mobile phone on silent (vibrate) but what did they do a few years ago before there invention. People talked properly without prior warning so it was more common sense.

  • Comment number 72.

    "Union boss Derek Simpson is still using Twitter despite a row erupting with BA when he tweeted during talks."

    What an arrogant idiot, this man is.

  • Comment number 73.

    I am really surprised that people have time for this nonsense!! I'm even more surprised that people have such sad lives that they can be bothered to read the rubbish pushed out in this way!!!
    Obviously the meeting between BA and Unite, which affects the lives of thousands, was rivetting stuff!!!! Certainly kept Derek Simpson enthralled!!

  • Comment number 74.

    How do you negotiate in a confidential manner if one party is leaking like a sieve?

  • Comment number 75.

    I can imagine him typing away now:

    "Reading BBC HYS, seems I've been an idiot. Will apologise to WW tomorrow, will try again to get perks back. Seems strike Day 1 went well, shame we didn't get those perks back"

  • Comment number 76.

    Very unprifessional behaviour from the union leader. Then again I would expect nothing less. Professional union workers have no idea of how things wirk in any other workplace.

  • Comment number 77.

    As one or two other people have mentioned, the extent to which the BBC promotes Twitter is downright suspicious. Who are these people who use it? I am 28 and I don't know anyone who uses Twitter! Are some head BBC executives buddies with Twitter shareholders? Every day there is a story about Twitter! I could also say the same about iPhones, iPods (never mp3 players)... even the BBC's online video service is iPlayer!

    Do we get a cut in the profits you get from advertising these companies? I would like an iPhone please!

  • Comment number 78.

    In This case not to Twitter is the answer ...sometimes I wonder about the sanity of people who are in positions of power or status and who behave like total idiots should they be given that status in the first place ..I really think a resignation is in order

  • Comment number 79.

    I may be wrong, but when I sign company contracts as I work for them, there is often a clause about inappropriate use of the internet.

    This is generally included under "Gross misconduct", and has an "instant dismissal" punishment attached.
    To be fair, leaking confidential company information is gross misconduct on several magnitudes larger than viewing adult images in the office.

  • Comment number 80.

    Tweeting is that new buzz word that makes the bbc seem to be part of the internet.

    Tweeting is a social stigma taken up by people who think the rest of us care what they are doing or have done.

  • Comment number 81.

    How much more will the BBC dumb down.

    Forget tweeting nonsense and start giving a return for our licence fee.

  • Comment number 82.

    I would hate Twitter to be an approved method of communication at my job. I hate unprofessionalism.

  • Comment number 83.

    Tweeting is mostly inane chatter, the people of today are fixated with short useless messages. I cannot believe the garbage that people put on Facebook and some people seem to spend their entire on-line lives trying to gather more friends.... WAKE UP IDIOTS, you have very few friends and some acquaintances, and generally the relationships are nothing like you see on TV or Hollywood.

    I have no sympathy for idiots who tell the world what they are doing and why without a sensible pause for thought (do I want the world to know this?)

    I think the future politicians are going to be ripe for blackmail/ridicule from their Facebook entries of today.

  • Comment number 84.

    When is tweeting acceptable?


  • Comment number 85.

    What a load of rubbish. The mere name "tweet" suggests tittle tattle created by those who gossip all the time because they have nothing better to do.It strikes me those who twitter need to grow up especially those in responsible positions.

  • Comment number 86.

    Listen, for decades many lay union members felt that there views or communication to them always came after negotiations and the likes. All this TWEET is doing is an attempt to let others see how discussions of this nature are conducted, personally I'd allow camera's and court style reporters access to such proceedings! Then perhaps we would all see the warts an all version!

  • Comment number 87.

    As a member of Unite and a supporter of the staff in this strike I have to say that Derek Simpson was a fool to be doing this during the high profile talks, had he not the gumption to realise that he has given Walsh something to rightly complain about and detract from the business in hand.
    I expect more from Union leaders, stop playing with techno toys and give full attention to the meeting.
    Tweeting is a pathetic fad for those who think they are important enough to have every inane piece of life published.
    Oh must go now I am going to have a nice cup of tea !!

  • Comment number 88.

    How can any negotiations go forward when one of the dinosaurs was informing all and sundry what was going on by tweeting? THis union has no intention of sorting this matter out. They are reacting as if they were still fighting capitalism via their communist masters hence dinosaurs they are living in and using the past as their mantra. Come on Willie, bite the bullet, close BA down and see how the sheep feel about having no jobs, works for me.

  • Comment number 89.

    Tweeting, Facebook (stalkbook, or facelessbook) and the like are, in my opinion, dangerous to our society. Status announcements are akin to walking down the road shouting - "had cereal" or whatever. The access it gives is not automatically a good thing. We are not a suppressed aociety, so what is wrong with the usual methods of communication? Is it clever to tweet during meetings or dinner? I know several families where the normal activities such as meal times are seen as an interruption to the "virtual" life with online friends etc - who will not be there when it really matters. I fear it is already too late to curtail the juggernaut. By the way - please look up who owns Facebook - it is disturbing.

  • Comment number 90.

    Just noticed a comment from the BBC on this page. Ironically, that one can follow this HYS on twitter!

  • Comment number 91.

    I remember when CB radio was going to change the world!! It didn't. Twitter will soon be superseded by some other passing fad.
    As for Twittering during a private meeting, the man Simpson obviously has no standards at all.
    In any conversation there are few rules but one is privacy. In negotiations that privacy is more important as until it is written down nothing said applies, 'leaks' are not only ill mannered but can be counterproductive. Walsh strikes me as bumptious and rude but I would fully support him in rejecting any Union party that included Simpson.

  • Comment number 92.

    Tweeting is for twits I would ban it completely as it serves no useful purpose just like Facebook. Do people really have so little in thier lives?

  • Comment number 93.

    One should only tweet between the ages of 11 & 15. Anyone older than that needs to get a life.

    Simpson is an inarticulate, poorly educated, unsophistocated yob who is the perfect candidate to run a union.

    Walsh is an arrogant, overpaid, egotistical CEO who has very poor leadership & people management skills. He is perfect for the job.

    Therefore, both are a match for each other and we get to enjoy the soap opera of their making.

    The company may or may not survive but the pantomime is terrific entertainment.

    Dysfunctional companies are so much more fun to study that well run one's because there are so many fascinating flaws, all perfect reflections of the imperfections & failures of humans.

    The Willie & Derek Show really aught to have it's own slot on prime time TV when the viewers get a chance to vote for the most purile behaviour of the week. At the end of the season, the winner gets a ticket on Easyjet to Zimbabwe where they are filmed having afternoon tea with another well known despot.

  • Comment number 94.

    I hope the BBC will allow you to look at this link - facts about Facebook.

    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

  • Comment number 95.

    Try again!

    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

  • Comment number 96.

    The only thing that annoys me more than the rudeness of people who fiddle with gadgets during meetings, are the low-lifes who carry on talking on their phone while getting a service of some sort from someone else. I include people who phone while paying for shopping, buying tickets, getting on a bus etc.

    It's time etiquette caught up with technology.

  • Comment number 97.

    There are times when to tweet! At a new product launch or something like that… but not in an important meeting!

  • Comment number 98.

    64. At 6:45pm on 24 May 2010, spotthelemon wrote:
    1. At 12:46pm on 24 May 2010, Bangla Shields wrote:

    Cant believe I am writing this but I actually agree with Willie Walsh.

    I know the feeling.
    He's still a right [expletive delteted] though isn't he?

    Oh yes, he ruined Aer Lingus (he thinks he saved them) by turning them into an airline with Ryanair levels of service and BA prices and its obvious this is the agenda at BA.

  • Comment number 99.

    The only tweets I pay attention to are the birds in my garden.

  • Comment number 100.

    A person that behaves like that should not be responsible for anything, let alone the welfare of millions of union members. I pity those members that have to put up with this level of idiocy making decisions for them. Perhaps if he were not in a position of power the strike would never have happened.

    Little people with a little bit of power, a dangerous combination.


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