Digital Debacle: Tony Clement forced to change Twitter name after federal election announced

Industry Minister Tony Clement has become well known for his use of Twitter, which has been remarkably transparent and personal when compared with most politicians. But when the federal election was announced, our beloved @TonyClement_MP disappeared. Going to his old link,, you get a message: Sorry, that page doesn’t exist!”

Fortunately, he didn’t disappear; he simply relocated due to a forced name change. TonyClement_MP is now TonyClementCPC. But why?

Because of politics. During the election, Tony remains the Minister of Industry, but is not currently a Member of Parliament (which is the MP part). Stephen Harper, whose Twitter handle is PMHarper, didn’t need to change his name because it doesn’t identify him as an MP, just the PM, which he still is during the election.

It seems a little silly and trivial, but hey, that’s politics. I guess these guys need to create more universal names from the get-go—this dude stole @TonyClement, but the Minister could have just used @Tony_Clement.