The golden rule of the Internet (apart from not looking at porn on the work computer) is don’t feed the troll. Especially when the troll in question is threatening to do unspeakable things to your daughter. Advice Duncan Bannatyne might have been wise to follow this week after receiving a mystery tweet threatening one of his progeny. The Russian-based tweeter offered to leave Hollie Bannatyne unharmed in return for a measly £35k. The online mischief-maker clearly hadn’t done his Dragon’s Den research, Bannatyne is loaded to the tune of £320 million after all. The lack of fact-finding aside, the Twitter would-be extortionist managed to enrage Duncan who promptly offered up a £25k reward for information on the cheeky blackmailing scamp and doubling it if the rogue tweeters arms were broken. Presumably in an effort to stop him taking one of Hilary Devey’s wigs hostage and asking for a tenner for it’s safe return. Duncan’s followers are now on the case eager to cash in the £25k without having to put up with the miserable Scottish git hanging about and ‘mentoring’ their business. This isn’t the first time inhabitants of the Twittersphere have whipped up succinct sentences of menace on the site. Aside from Bannatyne’s troll-baiting the threats appear to fall into a few select camps. Here’s three career sectors to avoid if you don’t want to be threatened in 140 characters or less.
Whether she’s reeling in America's bible belt population with her lack of geographical knowledge or huntin’, shootin’ and fishin’ in Alaska, Sarah Palin is rarely out of the public eye. This coupled with the lax guns laws in America means she's also never too far from a crazy with a gun. Mainly because Palin or one of her immediate family members is the crazy toting a high calibre weapon. Never the less when her website was adorned with tasteless snaps of her enemies competitors with targets on them and one of them got shot, Palin got some death threats fired at her through the anti-social network. Sarah may want to reconsider every American’s right to bear arms if she ever gets her feet under the Resolute Desk.
Being the American Prez means that you get to know where the big red button is that could destroy the world, you get to travel in style on Air Force One, but most of all you get to become a target for anyone looking to be immortalised among such choice company as Lee Harvey Oswald and John Wilkes Booth. In 2010 the Secret Service had to investigate two tweet-based death threats on Obama. That their investigations weren’t very secret is neither here nor there. Most importantly they disclosed to the world you can tweet what you like to Sarah Palin, but if you mess with the Prez you could be looking at 5 years in the nick.
Duncan’s followers are now on the case eager to cash in the £25k without having to put up with the miserable Scottish git hanging about and ‘mentoring’ their business.
The hair-plugged, Man Utd Shrek-a-like turned the tables on the tweeting masses by threatening a scallywag who dared to take him on. Tweeting “I will put u asleep within 10 seconds hope u turn up if u don’t gonna tell everyone ur scared u little nit. I’ll be waiting.” Whilst it was just Wayne having a lark it made headlines with people assuming Rooney would be stupid enough to threaten someone in front of his mass of followers. Lets face it they may have a point, he’s never been known to be the sharpest tool in Man Utd’s toolbox.
Just having an affair with a married footballer is enough to get you some attention from some unhinged Twitter n’er do wells. Before the extent of Ryan Giggs’ extensive man-sluttery had been revealed, Imogen had to get police involved over a series of death threats against her on Twitter. Maybe next time Imogen love, pick someone who isn’t married, oh and then don’t whore yourself around any TV show that’ll have you in an effort to make some cash out of your seedy shagging story.
The coiffered, warbling, man-child Justin Bieber is responsible for not one but two Twitter threat stories. The ‘Beliebers’ harnessed the might of their combined texting digits to issue death threats to two women linked to the Biebs. Kim Kardashian was first on the list after Justin jokingly said she was his girlfriend following a slightly inappropriate photo shoot in the Bahamas. I can think of many reasons to threaten Kim K, but possibly dating a mop-haired teen sensation isn’t one of them. Selena Gomez also got a less than warm welcome from Justin’s army of fans with such delightful tweets as "If you are the Girlfriend of Justin I will Kill you I HATE YOU.” Most Disney princesses normally only have to deal with an ugly step-sister or two so death threats are possibly a little harsh, not to mention unimaginative.
After her YouTube hit ‘Friday’ people have been queuing up to threaten the 13 year old songstress with death for daring to release a ridiculously bad pop song. If that’s all it takes to get people riled up why did no-one put a hit out on any of Steps? With all the Twitter publicity that Rebecca Black's song and subsequent threats brought the gal’s only gone and released another ear-breaking tune for us all to loathe. Note to Twitter trolls: if you’d left her alone we could have avoided this. Now go sit in a corner and think about what you’ve done.
Losing the X Factor whilst simultaneously looking like a crystal meth addled Cheryl Cole guaranteed the rapping youngster a record deal from Simon Cowell. Her single which sampled ‘Oh My Darling Clementine’ really brought new meaning to the words 'old skool', while putting her firmly at the top of everyone’s haterz list. The scorn poured in via Twitter and the predictable combo of publicity surrounding the threats and Simon’s music industry ruining machine means the single is set to be Number 1 in the UK charts. Is anyone else seeing a pattern forming? Lessons need to be learnt people. Issuing meaningless death threats on Twitter may make you look witty and daring to your spotty teenage mates, but it’s helping our charts and minds to be filled with musical tosh the like of which hasn’t been seen since Timmy Mallet’s timeless classic - ‘Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini’. Step away from the celeb-taunting and get yourselves down to HMV quick sticks and buy some proper music. We need to put a stop to this filth polluting our airwaves.
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