TIMES VIEW: Social media jibes are cruel, cheap and lazy

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Chesterfield made national headlines this week, and for the most unlikely of reasons.

News outlets from the BBC to Mail On-line picked up on a story that the town’s well-dressing tribute to Princess Diana had been ridiculed on-line.

MORE ON THIS: Council hits back at Diana tribute criticism

OK, few people are going to say that the work of art created in the marketplace is an exact likeness of the late Princess.

But then even fewer will have tried to recreate a portrait of the most famous woman in the world using only flowers, bark and moss.

Those from outside the county still find the idea of well dressing either quaint or antiquated, with a whiff of the Wicker Man in its pagan origins. In fact it is a uniquely creative way of bringing communities together.

It is also no surprise to see the mocking of the Diana picture came via social media. People on Twitter and Facebook write the cruellest things that they would never dream of saying to the person they’re discussing. Tweeting jibes is easy. Volunteering your time to create, to actually DO something, is harder and infinitely more commendable.

Phil Bramley, editor

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