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Dec 08, 2009


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Of course it's a stunt... and a bad one at that!

But why?!?!? Keeping kids safe on the internet doesn't need a cheap gag to launch it; it was a fine initiative, though sadly one we've seen fail a dozen times before.

I love a conspiracy theory, its a bit sad though, surely his PR team can think up better ways to make his speeches interesting

If you're on a laptop with a mousepad you can.

The cursor will be on the 'send' button from a previous tweet, child mashes keyboard, and leans on mousepad at same time, a clickable mousepad will perform the function of the return key and the cursor does not need to be moved round the screen at all.

I don't get the bit about moving a mouse. Someone sends a tweet, moves the mouse to over the send button and clicks send. Someone else comes along and hits keys at random - but the mouse pointer will then still be in position over the send button surely?

Probability says the kids would have hit the biggest key - the space bar. Also there seems something contrived about finishing on uuuiop - exactly what you'd probably do if you were really trying to make it look random. The kid then missed out [, ], ; ,' # and went straight for either the mouse button - which he hadn't knocked in anyway, and were the cursor was till hovering over 'update' and hit the button, or hit the mouse pad to update!

Come on!! It would be more believable if he'd typed 'VoTe DaDDy cos mR CamerOn SmelLs of BuMs'

I made the same cynical comment to friends yesterday. A couple of thoughts, Gordon used the phrase: "my younger son had bashed out on the keys and then pressed send". This merely reflects his lack of understanding (rather than saying "he then clicked update". However if the son is 6, it is unlikely such gobbledegook would have been type.

Whether it actually happened as described or not is ultimately immaterial. The real story is that our Prime Minister tells a family story and a lot of the people in the country, myself included, are simply incapable of trusting the story as told. That is the tragedy.

I see no way this isn't a hoax, especially considering the timing. Of course there's nothing more awkward to explain than a genuinely timely coincidence, but given Brown's do-I, don't-I flirtation with PR the stunts normally stand out like a sore thumb because they are so out-of-keeping with his normal manner and demeanour. I still have nightmares about his YouTube video.

err TAB then ENTER would post it.

but it's probably a hoax.

Unless anyone's computers work differently to mine ... then tabbing doesn't take you through the reply button. Likewise, pressing space or return or anything, even if the last thing that happened was pressing reply, doesn't trigger reply.

As far as I could tell last night, there is no keyboard-only way to tweet.

Yes, the cursor could have been over the reply button (but seems unlikely it would stay there with random keyboard use)?

Or the son could be able to use the mouse / trackpad. He is 6. Not quite sure of 6 year olds' typing / mouse proficiency ...

Well, for me, experience shows that a child at the keyboard will hit the space bar at least once!!!

However, IF the twitter browser was at the main screen AND the child typed the tab bar first, THEN the random letters (wot no numbers?) THEN the TAB key DIRECTLY followed by the ENTER key, then it could have happened!!

(Forgive the caps!)



Actually, it's his younger son. He's three not six. Surely three year olds can't use mice can they?!

Also, you can tab to the reply button, but only if the reply button is visible on the screen i.e. the mouse is hovering over the tweet.


Some people here need to play with more three year olds - if they've seen mum or dad move the mouse and click, they can do it themselves. My sister once picked up a phone, dialled a random number (on a rotary dial!) and happily talked to a complete stranger utter gibberish for a few minutes. She was two. Just copying what she'd seen others do.

Also, er this really isn't that important.

My 2yr 9month old can't use a laptop trackpad or mouse. Brown's youngest son is 3yrs, 4 months.

Er this really isn't that important.

I remember my sister at about 6 years old was able to use Sherlock (ancient Mac search software before the days of Google) to find a video game website that she liked... might be a bit more difficult for a 3 year old though!

Everybody seems to be missing the point. We're all guilty of talking about whether or not a kid CAN do this. Who cares? The question is DID they, and the answer I honestly believe is no, it's made up the purposes of one line in a presentation.

Very ammusing. However, I have a 3 year old and he is more than capable of moving a mouse - especially if he's been watching me. Maybe it's not a stunt but rather a very convenient truth.

OK, on a Mac when using Twitter the arrow cursor that you move round the screen will be on the "Send' button below the dialogue box after the last tweet, but in the dialogue box where you type, the text cursor is still there blinking away, so you do not have to move the cursor at all to start typing.

You type whatever you want, lean on the mousepad, and because the screen cursor is already over the send button, your tweet is tweeted.

Of course, this does not prove it was not a stunt. What I'm saying is that on a Mac at least, you can definitely tweet without any need to move the cursor round the screen or use the tab button.

Anyone who follows Sarah Brown's tweets will know that this has happened on her account before. My son has also managed to post gobbledegook on my Twitter account, so I think you are all being a bit too cynical.

My three year old niece has no problem at all using a mouse...

It sounds like a bit of an elaborate setup just so he can make a joke in the middle of an announcement a week later.

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