How Representative of our Society is Twitter?

Have just installed TWInbox onto my PC with its ability to search the public timeline on Twitter, so I thought I’d have a go. I entered the key word Blind into one search and guide Dog in another. Not very original I know but I was saddened at what came back.

With the Blind search I obviously had to weed out all the references to the bands third eye blind, blind lemon and Blind Boys of Alabama. There was also a fair smattering of religious postings about how the blind get back their sight! Its obvious I’m a non-believer, I must be! Next there were loads of posts about lost glasses and contact lenses where people thought they were blind. yeah right!

finally came the really worrying ones in my opinion. The people who thought it was OK to laugh at the blind contestant on American Idol. I can’t comment on him because I haven’t seen the program. Apparently his dancing was rubbish and they really shouldn’t have allowed him to compete. No mention of what he sang. Then there was the person who’d helped a blind man in a shop and proceeded to laugh at what he’d bought. Very ordinary items incidentally. There were other sundry efforts too, including someone hating blind people in theatres, but the general consensus seemed to be that it was OK to laugh at blind people.

The guide dogs search was marginally better. For instance, my rant about the Manchester Evening news Arena not wanting to let me in with my guide dog was there. also one or two references to cute guide dogs. There were a few phobias too, but the trending topic for guide dogs today was … wait for it … who picks up guide dog pooh?

Er hello? Guide dog owners do of course. And before you ask how, we put our hands in plastic bags and pick up anything vaguely sausage shaped, just like anyone else but without the visual clues.

I really wish I hadn’t done those searches. With my negative experience with the MEN Arena also today, I’m feeling very low in the esteem department. its no wonder we struggle constantly for equal treatment if we’re seen as an object of ridicule.

Off to delete those searches now so that I don’t have to read any more of that dross.

If you’re reading this journal for the first time and want to follow a blind person on Twitter who talks about more than where her guide dog’s next shit is going to land, feel free to follow me.


About Mel Griffiths

I live and work in Nottingham, England and am blind. This blog is often centred around things that happen to me because of being blind. This is my space to write and sometimes people will disagree with what I write, but its the one place I have in which to be frank and honest. I also like to reflect on the funnier side of life from time to time.
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2 Responses to How Representative of our Society is Twitter?

  1. ezzie_j says:

    oh my
    Gosh that’s sad. People can be so stupid sometimes, not to mention idiots!
    I hope you feel more positive tomorrow.
    Big hugs

  2. Anonymous says:

    I found you on twitter by searching for the term Guide Dog too and also noted the amount of pooh comments…. I have to admit doing puppy walking has really opened my eyes to a lot of things I didn’t know before (even though my dad is registered blind). The issues that ‘lack of awareness’ create for me at puppy walking give me an idea of some of the issues that must make it hard for service dog users. Top of the list being the amount of people who try their hardest to distract the dogs to pat them, or practically walk straight into the dogs…
    Locally all the taxi companies, shops, restaurants and venues have been really good so far, but maybe that’s because we have a large Guide Dogs office in the local area? I was actually a bit shocked to read about your issues with taxis and MEN arena and it’s actually made me feel a bit annoyed. I go out of my way to expose my puppy to lots of situations so that she will be quite comfortable in these places with her owner.
    Maybe once you’ve been to the MEN you could politely suggest some awareness training for their staff.
    kirsty x

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