Fracking issue increasingly distorted by misinformation – on both sides of the argument

Caroline Lucas

Fracking must be halted until we know more

So what if 200tr cubic feet of shale gas lives under Blackpool. The industry, and the impact of fracking, are unknown quantities

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/sep/22/shale-gas-exploration-halted#start-of-comments

This is a pretty reasonable article from Caroline, but the comments posted on it by Guardian readers are real mixed bag – with a lot that are alarming.

It is clear that most people simply have no idea quite what the scale of the threat is nor the full range of the ramifications.

It is also clear that the arguments against need to be factually sound and free from exaggerated scare-mongering. This is not something all campaigners are good at – and it does far more harm than good to the wider debate.

3 thoughts on “Fracking issue increasingly distorted by misinformation – on both sides of the argument

    1. Mike

      As a progressive and liberal party please be warned that Gogwatch (Comment 1 above) is an extreme far-right “political blog” produced by BNP supporters.

      Their views can be demonstrated by a recent article entitled “I come from Pembrokeshire – the Welsh language doesn’t belong here”, A revolting piece of poison. The websites main purpose is to attack the Welsh language and Welsh language speakers (thus the lovely name Gogwatch) although contributors to the Gogwatch messageboard also inhabit other messageboards denounding their other pet hates the EU and immigration.

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      1. The Red Flag

        Gogwatch? Almost certainly the work of a Serb living in North West Wales called Jaques Protic.

        Many of you may be unfamiliar with the name, but if you follow Welsh political blogs then you will have read his comments under a host of pseudonyms, ‘Jon Jones’, ‘Mo Patel’, etc. Once one is exposed another emerges. He also comments as Jacques Protic. The giveaway is that they often appear on the same post ‘supporting’ each other. On Twitter, Protic can – or could until recently – be found hiding behind a number of handles including: @gogwatch, @GLASNOSTORGUK, @cymnot, @Plaidodo (also used as an e-mail address), and @momopatel1960. This ‘Mo Patel’ Twitter account has now closed, but I’m told it started off using my gravatar with the eyes scratched out and the mouth taped over! There are almost certainly other identities. Though strangely, for a high-powered, international businessman, I can’t find a Twitter account in his own name.

        Protic is also, allegedly, the man behind the now defunct Gogwatch website and it is further suggested that he ran the Glasnost blog. Given his obsessive hatred for the teaching of Welsh (read this), there are many who believe that Protic was also BiLingo. Although not naming Protic this blog establishes the link between BiLingo and Gogwatch. BiLingo caused a great deal of hurt to good people, dedicated teachers, through having its lies repeated by English newspapers.

        Not only does Protic sometimes write in his own name, he has even stood for election. In May this year (2013) he offered himself to the electors of the Aethwy ward on Ynys Mon as an Independent candidate . . . he gained 3% of the vote.

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