IoS letters, emails & online postings (18 August 2013)


After the death of a schoolgirl bullied online, founders Mark and Ilja Terebin have indicated they would in future identify anonymous abusers via their IP addresses and "ensure this information is accessible to the legal authorities". Twitter and other social network sites could do this too. Far simpler, having identified the abusers, would be to post their identities online.

If these people feel so strongly and passionately about their opinions, surely they wouldn't mind others knowing who they were? We are the country of Speakers' Corner in Hyde Park, which for many years has given citizens an opportunity to speak their minds. I don't remember too many of them doing that while wearing a mask.

Alternatively, social networking sites could simply promote this message online: "Would you be happy if your grandmother read this?"

Geoff Hulme

Altrincham, Cheshire

Your report "Revealed: the violent men cleared by police" (11 August) included concern about authorities' awareness of the "pattern of controlling and coercive behaviour" associated with domestic violence.

I am a retired police officer and an authority on the crime of stalking. I regularly encounter a terrible lack of awareness by police in their ability to recognise stalking behaviour, and the appalling consequences it can have especially on domestic violence victims. The typical response by those in police authority is that the crime is taken seriously but the clear anecdotal evidence from victims is to the contrary. It is time action is seen to be taken against those police at fault.

Hamish Brown

Egham, Surrey

In "Fall in wages puts Britain in Europe's bottom four" (11 August), you presented the horrifying fact that in Europe only workers in Greece, Portugal and the Netherlands have seen larger falls in real wages in the past three years than in Britain.

We need to bring manufacturing and food production back to Britain, develop our renewable energy and energy conservation industries, and share the resulting wealth fairly throughout the economy, not concentrate it at the top. That means a focus on small and medium businesses and co-operatives, and a reining-in of the excesses of the low-paying, often tax-avoiding, multinationals.

The Green Party is calling for the minimum wage to be a living wage and for a ban on zero-hours contracts, to rebuild our economy around jobs that you can build a life on. This means restructuring the economy away from debt-driven consumer consumption and housing bubbles – the two factors that have enabled the Treasury Secretary Sajid Javid to claim our economy has "regained momentum".

Natalie Bennett

Leader, Green Party

London NW1

In believing that incentives to parents would discriminate against him as a single, childless person, Tim Mickleburgh fails to accept the basic principles of the welfare state (Letters, 11 August). Not each and every element is intended to help everyone. Each component part is structured to help those who need it. I am sure Mr Mickleburgh will benefit in some ways unavailable to young mothers.

Eddie Dougall

Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

I enjoyed your article "Man able to live for two years with artificial heart" (28 July). However SynCardia does not warn against using the device for longer than two years. Many patients have had it for longer. As heart disease and failure increase, there is a shortage of donor hearts, and the waiting lists have grown from weeks and months to years.

Michael P Garippa

CEO and president, SynCardia

Tucson, Arizona, USA

Well done, Janet Street-Porter, for having a go at "fine dining" with its "showing-off, oneup-manship on a plate" (11 August). Many of us prefer more homely fare to food we see at restaurants and have to ask what it is.

Tim Mickleburgh

Grimsby, Lincolnshire

I am female, but I can't imagine a dish I would "stack in precipitous layers" because of my gender.

Susan Booth

Rochester, Kent

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