We have a rival petition

We have a rival e-petition in favour of grouse shooting (all types) which was set up over a week ago and yesterday passed 3000 signatures.

It needs a bit of help from the Chelsea set to get a remotely respectable number of signatures and that help has not yet been forthcoming. When we see the signatures flooding in from the posher parts of London we’ll know they’ve woken up.

The name attached to the e-petition is one Neil Jones – means nothing to me. He doens’t seem to have many friends outside of Richmond (Yorks) and even there his number of friends (79 at the time of writing) is considerably fewer than the number of friends that Chris Packham has (212 signatures).

The most interesting thing about Neil Jones’s e-petition is that it was created on 16 August (3 days after Chris’s e-petition was published), got its five signatures that very day, and was opened (ie published) on 23 August. That’s a delay of 7 days (well below, in fact very considerably below, the average of 21 days) compared with the 39 day delay for Chris’s e-petition (well above the average). Hmmm. A difference in delay of 32 days – over a month – for a process that should be pretty automatic? Although I do not go looking for conspiracies sometimes they appear to be staring you in the face…

But a race is always good sport. Let’s get going!

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23 Replies to “We have a rival petition”

  1. I would not put anything passed this Government and their committees. One would be unwise to believe anything they say or do. They act only in their own interests.

  2. I suppose it was only a matter of time, though it misses the point because there is no proposal to ban grouse shooting, only driven grouse shooting. In the absence of any national polling, perhaps we could take this as indicative of the strength of feeling for banning DGS (96%) and for not banning DGS (4%). I suppose 82,000 is quite a decent sample size compared to most national opinion polls, though I recognise that those canvassed so far are more likely to have an opinion and ‘care’ one way or the other.

  3. Hopefully this rival petition will work in our favour. As, all being well, if this rival achieves a relatively paltry number of signatures it will help to contrast with the great majority of signatures in favour of banning driven grouse shooting. Let’s hope it works out like that.

    1. Sadly I recall that the previous variant was allowed to field supporters (31 Oct 2016) disproportionate to its actual success as a petition (insufficient for a debate in its own right), but hey .... who needs democracy when 'sport' is to be had 😉

  4. I don't see it as rival, I see it as complimentary. We are against driven grouse shooting. Is this not an opportunity to force the clear distinction to be made publically and hopefully all over the press?
    Think judo, use your opponents momentum against them.

  5. Chelsea set? Careful Mark, we cannot have your postcode class prejudices peeping over the barricades!

    1. Nick Kester - you should look at this map - https://petitionmap.unboxedconsulting.com/?petition=205672&area=uk and focus on the London area, and then tell me which, of all the 650 Uk constituences had the highest sign-up to this petition in favour of driven grouse shooting. Was it, by any chance, Fulham and Chelsea?

      There's no need to apologise just because you see prejudice everywhere when it is actually fact.

      1. Of course, Mark, I can see that - it was totally tongue-in-cheek. On the other hand it could be that they simply couldn't be bothered as they don't see it really applies to their London lives. There are many reasons why people don't sign (or do). One could equally speculate that the preponderance of SNP seats is a loathing for English absentee landowners? Bluntly, I really don't see the map standing up statistically. It is merely a overlay of the committed onto a political map; now if the signatures declared their political colour, that would be very interesting. What was it Churchill said about statistics?
        I shall be sorry to see both petitions die. Every side deserves its debate.

        1. "Lies, damned lies, and statistics" is a phrase describing the persuasive power of numbers, to reinforce statistics in weak arguments.

          Mark Twain

          1. Thomas Bickerton - I've always been disappointed with Twain for that quote. It is the weak minded who are misled by numbers and they ought to up their game! It is basically, on the face of it, an argument for never believing anything, rather than thinking hard about what is convincing.

  6. Do both petitions dies with the perogation and new session of of Parliament? Not perhaps the most pressing issue when our PM seeks to overturn the outcome of the English Civil War but I'd like to know.

  7. Would have been courteous to provide a link mark! Anyhow I did get a response from the hoc petitions committee about the "conspiracy"

    Dear Giles,

    Thank you very much for your message.

    Our moderators start to check petitions in the order in which they arrive. Sometimes, they don’t manage to finish checking petitions exactly in the order in which they arrived. There are a number of reasons why this may be the case for a given petition. I’ve set out some of the more common reasons below – but there may be other, less common reasons why it takes our moderators more or less time to check a given petition.

    One reason is that there are a number of moderators in the Petitions Committee team (who support the MPs of the Petitions Committee). This means that it can be tricky to co-ordinate the checking process precisely to make sure that moderators finish checking petitions in exactly the order in which they arrived.

    Another reason is that moderators need to discuss some petitions with their creators more than others. If it’s clear that a moderator should accept or not accept a petition, they’ll be able to make their decision more quickly. But, if a moderator and a petition’s creator need to talk more via one or more e-mail exchanges or telephone conversations, the process of checking the petition can take longer.

    Another reason is that, sometimes, a petition might be about a complex topic or a topic about which a moderator doesn’t have specialist knowledge. In this case, our moderators will ask subject specialists (like the House of Commons Library subject specialists) who might take some time to respond to their queries, or may need to engage in time-consuming research on that topic.

    I hope that this helps with your question. Please let us know if we can do anything more for you. We’re always happy to talk about petitions.

    Kindest regards,

    Enquiries and Engagement Assistant, Petitions Committee, House of Commons
    E: Petitionscommittee@parliament.uk W: www.parliament.uk/petitions
    Follow us on twitter: @HoCPetitions
    Pronouns: she / her

    www.parliament.uk | @ukparliament | @houseofcommons
    Supporting a thriving parliamentary democracy


    From: Giles Bradshaw
    Sent: 23 August 2019 06:37
    To: HOC Petitions Committee
    Subject: question


    I wanted to try and find out how you prioritise petitions for publication.

    I notice that some petitions get published much faster than others following the completion of moderation (five signatures) meaning that effectively it is not a first in first put queue.

    very best wishes

    Giles Bradshaw

      1. well I did my best mark! I thought you'd be grateful actually...

        There could be a simpler example than your conspiracy theory though - perhaps this is yet another example of a fake conspiracy theory put out by a top secret deep state department for conspiracy theories in order to distract us from what is REALLY going on..

  8. So, I recall the Westminster debacle of 31 October 2016, when earlier variant on this got a place at the table despite insufficient signatories to justify their presence.

    Ever gracious Mark was magnanimous but the farce of wider 'meddling' looks like continuing perhaps?

    What likelihood that the Petition Committee will actually ensure that any evidence submitted by those who are unable / cannot afford a trip to London will receive a fair hearing and or be taken account of? Will they require that it is factual or can it be fictitious;(


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