From Pirate Party UK Wiki
|Pirate Party UK Candidate|
|Region||North West England|
|Background||Technology and Digital Rights|
I was brought up in Glossop, Derbyshire, and went to school at Padfield County Primary, before attending Manchester Grammar School for my secondary education and GCSEs. I then went on to do my ‘A’ levels in Applied ICT, Geology and French at the Marple Campus of the Cheadle and Marple Sixth Form College.
My professional life is rooted in Information Technology. I am currently employed both as a systems engineer for a telecommunications company in Manchester, as well as being contracted part-time as a systems administrator for a national media organisation with responsibility for their Xen Web Cluster.
One of my passions is sailing. I succeeded in becoming a full RYA Dinghy Instructor at the age of 16. I then went on to organise the Glossop Sailing Club entries to the Southport 12 Hour (Juniors) and 24 Hour Races, which led to my being awarded the High Peak Young Sports Leader.
My interest in computing and digital rights grew after my introduction to Free Software whilst still at school. My ambitions for, and involvement with, the Manchester and then later the UK technology scene grew. It has reached the point where I now travel widely, and have given a variety of talks on issues including “Engaging Young People in Technology” at BECTA’s Open Source Schools ‘Unconference’.
Early this year, it became clear to me that the best way make a real difference would be to stand as the Parliamentary Candidate for the Pirate Party UK for the Gorton Constituency of Manchester, on a platform of honest politics, civil liberties and digital rights.
I hope I can answer the questions people have - feel free to email me, twitter @me, say hi on facebook, drop me a call, or stop me in the street - I'll be happy to do my best to give you a satisfactory answer.
Why I'm Standing
A copy of my manifesto for this election is available here, direct from my campaign website.
I grew up in an Internet Age, no longer was new technology something for businessmen and those who could afford the pricey hardware - everyone could get access. Suddenly, people had the opportunities that their parents could only have dreamed about - chances to instantly forge connections, to catch up on what all their friends were up to at the weekend without blocking the family land-line for a whole evening. People have been able to trace old school friends, remix recipes even start businesses and turn creative ideas into reality.
Ever since this technological revolution exploded over the world, public sector and government has been struggling to move at the speed of technological advancements. Schools have found themselves stuck with outdated syllabuses, teaching prescriptive lessons for specific software products, and preventing students from engaging in cutting edge innovation.
Yet politics and political discourse didn't seem to keep up. I realised that representation was still something offered by only a few, supported by a media struggling to keep up. As such I felt that the only way to affect real change was to stand and promote a message that I feel is appropriate and more in keeping with what people want.
The United Kingdom isn’t ‘broken’, but there are areas where I feel the current Government is taking the wrong direction, or not standing up for what it should value. Although the country is no longer on the cusp of economic collapse, there were some very poor decisions made by the Government in the run up to the recent economic crisis, as a result of which there are now people suffering, who need not be.
It is clear that in this next Parliament, decisions must be made that will have a great impact on the United Kingdom well into the future. Everyone should have their views represented in the process of making those very difficult decisions. I feel that I could make a real difference in that process. What I am presenting to you, are simply some ideas to achieve a stronger, happier, safer and more prosperous society in the United Kingdom.