By Scott Costen
After blocking me on Twitter last night, Queens-Shelburne MLA Kim Masland appears to have quit the social media platform altogether.
Masland blocked me after I retweeted and commented on one of her posts about Nova Scotia PC leadership hopeful Tim Houston, who she has actively supported for months.
I have written more about Masland than any other journalist in Queens-Shelburne.
I covered her election campaign. I reported on her landslide victory. And I wrote several articles about her work as a legislator, including this look at her first year in office. I also wrote about Houston (who I interviewed in Masland’s home) in a print edition of LighthouseNow Progress Bulletin.
In editorials published to my former and current local new sites, I have both praised Masland (e.g. for setting up her constituency office on Liverpool’s vacancy-plagued Main Street) and criticized her (e.g. close ties between local PCs, Queens District RCMP and the Queens County senior safety position.)
I don’t recall ever being overtly negative towards Masland on Twitter. The closest I may have come was when I pointed out the cynicism inherent in this news release. Kris Snarby, while presented as a generic “concerned parent,” is in fact a well-known PC activist in Queens County. I found the release disingenuous and said so in a tweet, which I later deleted.
In a text message this morning, Masland told me, “I have deactivated my account this morning because I have better things to do than reading the constant negativity.” She did not cite any specific interactions that prompted this decision, nor did she respond to questions about why she blocked one of the only journalists in her district late last night.
To be fair, Masland had previously been warm and accommodating to me as a local reporter. So last night’s “blocking” caught me by complete surprise.
Perhaps Masland just got tired of hearing about her preferred leader’s campaign indiscretions. Maybe she was sick of seeing my Twitter handle. Or perhaps she was already thinking of throwing in the Twitter towel and my brief post was the last straw.
Whatever the case, Masland won’t suffer from taking a Twitter break, nor from blocking a two-bit local reporter and columnist like me. She is widely adored and seldom questioned in Queens County. And besides, Facebook is where she really shines.