Parody accounts are one of the enjoyable things about Twitter, there are some great ones out there. There are the many Queen, and other members of the Royal Family, parody accounts, Don Brash, Mad Dog Prebble, Asenati Taylor and many more that come and go. Some of them are better than others. However, they may be fun and interesting for people to watch, but Twitter users with a high public profile need to be careful. They can be rather convincing, particularly when they play up to perceived stereotypes of the people they are parodying.
Twitter sets some rules:
Now not all accounts are going to meet this standard, so it is up to MPs, party officials, members of the press gallery to be careful about who they engage with, and how. It looks like last night Melissa Lee fell into the trap of responding to a parody account, as if it was the real account.
The exchange isn’t that bad for Melissa, but it should serve as a warning to other MPs and party officials about who they reply to and how. I suspect we will see more and more parody accounts as the election campaign continues.