UPDATE 19 MARCH The Sun writes today that David Cameron “was stitched up when footage of him adjusting his hair was sneakily fed to all broadcasters”. Erm, riiiight.  How can Auntie stitch Dave up with footage that was disseminated via the internet and was originally (irony alert) from The Sun’s Murdoch stablemate Sky News?!


With more than 39,000 45,000 63,000 views, David Cameron’s airbrush hairbrush moment posted by Scrapbook on Tuesday is the 3rd most viewed clip on YouTube. And that’s internationally – not just in Europe or the UK.

Notwithstanding the fact Scrapbook wouldn’t want his hair blowing all over the place either, the most effective campaign memes reinforce what people already think: in this instance that Cameron is vain and shallow. As one journalist suggested yesterday, it might not be Bercow’s rudeness to journalists or Brown storming off Boulton, but it ‘s another droplet in a social media drip-drip effect that is undermining the Tory leader. The content of a video may be less significant than whether it goes viral – as this one has.

With tens of thousands of views in such a short period, the velocity of little clips like this could be deadly in the hours following each so-called “Prime Ministerial debate”.

“And here’s Mr. Cameron’s view coming right up!”

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  20. Sorry – I’m the last person to defend Cameron but the idea that he sorts his hair out before he goes on TV makes him ‘vain and shallow’ is about as stupid a comment as you could expect to come out of this idiotic personality-focused coverage of the election.

  21. Personality, or rather how people perceive politicians, does make a difference to voter behaviour and on that basis alone it’s legitimate fare for blogs like this one. Clearly, this should be an adjunct to the bigger debate around policy and for that, go to LabourList, Left Foot Forward and ConservativeHome (I do every day).

    But commentary like this has been around as long as politics and diary columns (which is what this blog is essentially) for almost as long. The problem with the balance between the relative levels of personality vs policy in political debate predate the blogosphere and should really be laid at the door of the mainstream media and party machines.

    I don’t want a Tory government. If posting a clip of Cameron looking like an idiot makes this less likely then I will do so, especially when this plays into an established narrative (airbrushed posters etc).

    Footage of his personal grooming was quickly a hit on the internet.
    Tory officials sought to laugh off the affair.

    One said: ‘It was a bad hair day.’

    But they are conscious that Mr Cameron must avoid leaving voters with the impression that he is overly concerned by his appearance – a theme that will reinforce criticism that he is a political PR man, especially after his previous allegedly airbrushed appearance on a Tory billboard poster.


  22. If you think that makes Cameron look an idiot, then seriously you need to get a life, if anything it actually makes him look more human. A quick brush of the hair with his hands to sort it out – who hasn’t done that? Especially if you’re about to appear on tv.

    I’m no Cameron fan myself but I bet that clip has probably impoved his image

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