Cyberspace Brawls

Internet debate can be coarse, but it is holding journalists and politicians to account, writes Boris Johnson. What are we going to do about the lawyers, he asks.

When any of us write something these days, it is like tiptoeing to a cage with a hunk of meat, and nervously prodding it through the bars. Sometimes the blogosphere will seem happy with the offering and the beast will briefly growl approval; and sometimes there is such a yowling and clamouring that we feel like Clarice Starling as she sets off down the corridor of mental patients, in search of Hannibal the Cannibal. Politicians are being held to account by journalists; journalists are being held to account by their readers – and it cannot be long...before the wind of popular scrutiny blows through all the bourgeois professions.