Page last updated at 19:48 GMT, Thursday, 12 November 2009

MPs clash over 'reply all' e-mail

E-mail
MPs and peers were flooded with e-mails

A row has broken out over MPs and peers hitting "reply to all" to a round robin e-mail about cyber security.

Many MPs hit reply all to the message from Conservative MP Mark Pritchard ensuring a torrent of unwanted e-mails in the inboxes of other MPs.

Former Liberal Democrat leader Charles Kennedy and others sent messages asking for their colleagues to stop the flow.

But Lib Dem Greg Mullholland claims to have ended it with a message in red ink saying "NO MORE REPLY ALL".

Mr Mullholland's message, sent earlier on Thursday, said:

"To: All Members across both Houses

"IF I GET ANOTHER UNSOLICTED EMAIL ABOUT THIS CR*P I WILL BE MAKING A COMPLAINT. PUT YOUR BRAINS IN GEAR AND STOP BOTHERING ALL MPs and PEERS WITH THIS!!!! NO MORE REPLY ALL"

The Leeds North West MP told BBC News his "blunt" approach appeared to have worked.

"Do we need this ridiculous flow of e-mails full of all these daft comments? I wasn't even following them," he said.

I wasn't even remotely interested in joining this group."

He said the MP who sent the original e-mail could have prevented the torrent of "reply all" e-mails by sending the message to himself and CC-ing it to everyone else.

'Not surprised'

But Mr Pritchard, who sent the e-mail to invite Parliamentarians to join a new cyber-security group he is setting up, said he could not be blamed for people hitting "reply to all".

And he accused Mr Mullholland and the other Lib Dems who complained about it of not taking cyber-security seriously.

He said: "I am not surprised by Liberal Democrats treating cyber-security so lightly.

"It is also clear that some Liberal Democrat politicians need training in answering e-mails correctly without sending the same reply to every Tom, Dick and Harry."

The Wrekin MP said his new All Party Parliamentary Group for Cyber-Security had attracted support from senior MPs including Keith Vaz, chairman of the home affairs committee, former cyber security minister Tom Watson and former shadow home secretary David Davies.



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