Texting in Cricket and Politics

Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne

Those of you who are active followers of English cricket (certain members of my office included) will have been transfixed by the ongoing dispute over text messages that Kevin Pietersen reportedly sent to his South African opponents.

Pietersen was immediately dropped from the Test side, was not included in the One Day Internationals against South Africa despite announcing he was coming out of retirement, will miss the upcoming T20 World Cup and tour to India this winter, as well as not being awarded a central contract.

Last week, another story of texting across opposition lines came to light with Vince Cable’s texting of Ed Miliband, most recently over House of Lords reform. I sympathise with Vince’s view that it is important in politics to engage widely across the political spectrum.

As the Kevin Pietersen analogy indicates though, there are significant perils in carrying on a line of communication with a party that you are formally opposed to, whatever your past connections may be to them, when you hold a considerable position of responsibility. It certainly does not give the best impression, particularly as we cannot know what or who has been discussed. It beggars the question whether we are all pulling in the same direction or, in political jargon, singing from the same hymn sheet?

3 comments for “Texting in Cricket and Politics

  1. Gareth Howell
    20/09/2012 at 8:44 am

    There are things about the written word which are writ.

    I had tenants at one time, and if you told ’em to leave orally, they did not. “I refuse!” etc.
    If you wrote it down and they read it, then they would leave like lambs, on the due date at the due hour alloted by the written word.

    It is hard to explain how and why the writen word affects the brain differently from the spoken one, but it does, and when writ-ing
    one e-mails and texts and so on, one should always have it in mind.

    I always find text a hugely valuable way of communicationg with people who are not particularly literate, but who enjoy a little gadget. A great deal of business is done with tradespeople that way.

    Perhaps the cricketers took the business use of it, a little too far! It does seem to be an ephemeral, if not worthless use of literacy, but it is here to stay, and any way
    ipad is a proper e-mail use of text messaging
    and browsing too, so texting gadgets are now also full scaled down computers. They have finger touch expandable screen text.

    It is difficult to keep up with the best and newest inventions, amazing devices that they are. The cricketer was probably using an old gizmo!

  2. Gareth Howell
    20/09/2012 at 8:53 am

    As far as Cable’s texts to Milliband are concerned, they are writ, and as Cable says
    ‘he is not in the least bit ashamed of them’.
    Politicians can usually read.

  3. MilesJSD
    22/09/2012 at 3:55 pm

    (the Various Peoples of not only Britain but of the World)
    are not only
    “not singing from the same hymn sheet”
    nor “pulling in the same direction”;

    we are not active-members of the same co-existential and longest-term-sustainworthy One-World-Civilisation.

    In on-the-ground Fact,
    we are a “squillion” different “communities” permanently and irreversibly at “cold war” with each other.
    JSDM nevertheless spasmodically but charitably runs a non-profit website, called “Minority Of One”;

    and similarly so do “willions” of other still-hopeful and faithful “Would-Be-Earth-Citizen” individuals.
    Which of us is the worst
    “Texting while Home burns ?”

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