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Cameron joins Twitter but might regret it

Prime Minister David Cameron has dipped a toe into the Twitter waters, and may have wished he hadn't. His first tweet was greeted by a torrent of abusive messages and ridicule.

His first tweet from @davidcameron said: "I'm starting Conference with this new Twitter feed about my role as Conservative Leader. I promise there won't be too many tweets."

His arrival on the social network provoked plenty of Twitter users to poke fun. John Prescott, the former deputy prime minister and a veteran of Twitter stalwart, reposted some of the more polite responses, including questions that parodied Cameron’s privileged upbringing, including: "Hi Dave I wonder if you could tell me which wine goes best with roast swan? Cheers."

Many other Twitter users chose to attack his Government, his policies and his political integrity. Cameron wasn’t offering much in the way of a response, contenting himself with posting a dull picture of him meeting staff at the John Radcliffe hospital in Oxford, and later announcing he was about to appear on the Andrew Marr Show.

Cameron has been wary of Twitter in the past, although obviously his political advisers have persuaded him to join. In 2008 he was notoriously off-message when he said that "the trouble with Twitter, the instantness of it – too many tweets might make a tw*t." He had to apologise for the bad language on that occasion, and obviously remembered the comment when he opened his account.

Cameron himself chose to follow just four other Twitter accounts: the Conservative Party, William Hague, Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt, which are hardly going to give him a balanced picture of the world.

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