Yesterday, the despicable Jan Moir was slapped from one side of the media bubble to the other and back again. Anton has as good an account of this as any, and watching his blog, I suspect that he was somewhat instrumental in brewing up this storm. All of this in a week when the blogosphere - and even the right-wing blogsophere to some extent - leaped to the defence of Parliament for the first time in a while - creating the kind of weather that Parliamentarians everywhere would like to see more of in making the Trafigura injunction unsustainable.
All of it, however, points to the left-side of social media beginning to find a real purpose.
All political movements have a strain of thought that cuts across the actual issues that they care about. The most obvious example of this is within the Green Party - the 'Realos' and the 'Fundis'.
In summary, the Fundis believe that you should walk around looking like a sack of shit, farting like a regular vegan, refusing to compromise with the electorate in any way and using election literature to lecture everyone about how bad they've been and why the ought to vote Green. The Realos think you should say anything you need to do to get elected and not do anything to annoy powerful vested interests once you win so that you will win next time.
OK - there may be a couple of bits of caricature in there, but you see the point? Personally, I'm often accused of being too far on the Realo side of the political left. I'm told that I'm quite far out to the left in terms of a lot of the positions I take but the Realo perspective often gets me into arguments where I get accused of political machismo and 'why don't you just cut to the chase and vote Tory.'
Again, broad strokes. And I don't want to rehash the argument now, but my fairly consistent position has been that - if you want to diminish this - you have to make an impact upon the climate that politics works in. There's no point in moaning about Tory Bliar when public debate is tuned and moulded by right-wing media monopolies and over-powerful pressure groups. This week has seen social media being used to crowdsource hostility towards these forces. It's been a good week.
But where next? Well, our line of attack on the right is one that can be as concerted as their attack on us has been. They have focussed upon civil liberties and this imaginary political corruption as a way of recruiting large active numbers to a highly individualistic campaign. It has has done real damage to Labour's ability to govern, it's electoral prospects next year and its activist base. There are people that won't knock on doors for Labour next year because they imagine that their government has turned this country into some kind of police state.
Now, there is no reason why the stakes can't be raised on lazy journalists. Those who simply reprint the press-releases of the Taxavoiders Alliance. We can look at ways of toxifying the brands of newspapers and attacking their advertisers. We can start demanding the levels of transparency from corporations that the right had demanded from their enemies - a too-powerful Parliament and BBC. This week, we've stopped big vile corporations from burying their bad news. We've damaged the Daily Mail's brand and hit it where it hurts.
We can pick up Tom's lead and start demanding more transparency in corporate governance, and more responsibility to be placed upon shareholders of companies. The one thing that we don't yet have - even in a social media-type decentralised way - is any co-ordination on this.
There is, I believe, a need for a concerted attempt to create frameworks that will consistently damage the brands of media interests and provide channels for those that will expose the anti-democratic practices of monopolistic corporations.
It's been a good week and there's a bit of impetus that can be picked up here. I reckon so anyway...