Truly, we live in the age of the ego. I exist, therefore I am important and newsworthy. How to reconcile worries about privacy with the tidal wave of personal data churned out on Twitter and social media? Surely, one cancels out the other. Some of those whingeing that gagging orders and superinjunctions have resulted in innocent people being slandered – Jemima Khan, for example – spend hours daily babbling opinions using exactly the same media.
The high-profile people who complain about "loss of privacy" are the same souls who use carefully timed press releases and television appearances whenever they've got something to flog or a bit of character rebranding to do. If you don't like the heat, get out of the kitchen. Put simply – shut up!
The Culture Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, is said to be considering legislation to try to force Twitter, etc, to abide by the same rules as the rest of the press. Fat chance – there is no way the internet can or should be policed. More importantly, what right does the UK have to impose our cultural and moral standards on global internet users?
There is no such thing as real privacy for celebrities today unless they shun interviews, keep their front door shut to photographers from Hello! magazine, and rarely appear in public. A perfect example is Kate Bush, who doesn't tour and isn't doing any gigs to promote her first album in six years. She says she prefers to stay at home and be with her family. Result – goddess status, five-star reviews and a cult following. The more you reveal about yourself the less interesting you are.
Contrast her behaviour with that of George Michael. When asked about his private life recently, he said he would reply only on Twitter. George isn't aware that a survey conducted by Bauer media finds fans moaning that celebs who tweet aren't that interesting once the initial thrill of being able to contact them has worn off. Music business executives are trying to wean some artists off social media because it makes it impossible to build any sense of mystique about their work. David Bowie and Marc Bolan would never have tweeted.
No point in telling that to George M, who uses the announcement of a new tour to say he wants to "make amends" for his public disgraces. George tells us this tour and a new CD, to be recorded with unknown gay artists, are an expression of penance for the homophobic abuse his wacky actions unleashed, and the negative effect that the subsequent media furore had on gay kids.
Very humble, but who asked him to be a role model? There are a huge number of out gay men, from Elton John to Stephen Fry and Michael Stipe, from the late Stephen Gateley to Gareth Thomas – none of whom ever claimed to be a role model. Why should gays need a gay role model anyway? Why not choose high achievers; fun, positive people, of any sexual persuasion? These remarks prove that George's ego is still the dominant love of his life.
Sarah Ferguson is another Me Person with a curious take on privacy. She chose an interview with Oprah Winfrey on American television to reveal her "secret" thoughts about the royal wedding. Distraught at not being invited, she coped by taking a luxury holiday in Thailand. She could have stayed at home and helped her daughters get dressed before they stepped out looking like a couple of panto extras.
Sarah is no longer a member of the Royal Family anywhere but inside her own head, whimpering "I was the last bride up that aisle... I really love the feeling that Diana and I both weren't there, but I'm here to say how proud she would have been". Classic "all about me" bilge.
Donald Trump is another rampant superego, who demanded to see Barack Obama's birth certificate in case the President had lied, and announced that he might run for the presidency himself. Trump told a magazine his extraordinary hairstyle wasn't a comb-over, and went into precise detail about how he achieved that woeful meringue on his head, clearly thinking that the world was waiting with bated breath for the answer to the big question of the day – not how to prevent earthquakes, whether Guantanamo should be closed, or where Bin Laden's widow is – but how does Donald T do his hair?
With all this self-obsession mixed up with self-promotion, privacy is a relative concept. The former chief secretary to the Treasury David Laws claimed privacy was the reason he fiddled tens of thousands of pounds of expenses, but the desire to keep your sexuality secret is hardly justification for creative accounting.
The Government has more important tasks than monitoring social media. Inevitably, Twitter will soon go out of fashion, and be replaced by another piece of technology to feed the cult of me. It will never be part of my life.
Hugh's fish fight nets a prince
A lot of rot is talked about celebrity chefs, but sometimes they succeed in changing our attitudes in a way politicians never could.
Well done, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, he's just persuaded MPs to support his Fish Fight campaign and call for an end to the scandalous practice of throwing back dead fish caught in nets. With excellent timing, Selfridges has unveiled a huge event throughout their stores – Project Ocean – put together with the Zoological Society of London. It aims to promote awareness of sustainable fishing and protecting the marine environment.
The store's food halls and restaurants have banned endangered fish, chefs are giving cooking demonstrations, and there is thought-provoking art on display, including the jewelled lobster hat by Philip Treacy for Lady Gaga. Beth Derbyshire's mesmeric video installation Seven Seas is also worth a look.
Prince Charles popped in last week – though I don't know if Camilla will be sporting one of the Katharine Hamnett slogan T-shirts that are on sale.
Pay-to-play in a park? Shame!
As another teenager was killed (allegedly over a mobile phone) in south London last week, does it make sense for Wandsworth council to charge children £2.50 to use an adventure playground in Battersea Park at the weekends?
Just south of the Thames rich and poor live side by side – swanky mansion blocks and expensive terraces border tower blocks and estates.
Why should kids from council flats with no gardens have to pay to use local amenities? Free swimming has already been culled. I don't care how much it costs to run an adventure playground, this sets a disturbing precedent which will be copied by penny-pinchers elsewhere.
* The renovation of St Pancras, London, is complete with the opening of the Renaissance Hotel and Marcus Wareing's stylish new restaurant, the Gilbert Scott. My lunch was delicious (especially the baked onions), but the faux British menu is a bit perplexing. You can order Sage and Onion Paxo stuffing and chips with Sarsons mayonnaise. Harrogate loaf is a veal terrine – in 30 years of eating lousy food in Harrogate I've never encountered a meat loaf. Isn't this trying a bit too hard?