Third Sector at Large: Financial data? I've got a load of it to shift at the lock-up

Charity Business's data, controlling information on Twitter and the Transforming Local Infrastructure winners are on our minds this week

- Surreal developments in the Charity Business crash: readers will recall how one of its clients, the London poverty charity Cambridge House, ended up with disks and hard drives holding the financial information of other clients too. It had reunited all but two organisations with their payroll data when one hard drive crashed, causing some consternation. Then Cambridge House worked out that a key they'd also been given was for a lock-up in Swindon, which apparently contains hard copies of everything. It's like something out of Minder - all is not lost, my son.

- The Office for Civil Society had first-hand experience last week of the way Twitter has tossed a hand grenade into information control. It notified winners and losers for the Transforming Local Infrastructure fund, but embargoed the official announcement for Thursday. Come Wednesday, everyone was tweeting about the decisions and the OCS was rushing round trying (vainly) to enforce the embargo. Then it made matters worse by releasing the list of applicants rather than the list of winners, and trying (vainly) to tell people to delete it. All a bit awkward, really.

- Another approach, of course, is trying to control the tweets. Beatbullying invited the press to an event last month to announce its big grant from the OCS's Social Action Fund, but embargoed the announcement until two days later. When it was pointed out that tweeting in the interim was inevitable, the PR company demanded to be allowed to vet any tweets before they went out. Some people just don't get it.

- Still on Twitter, a leviathan stirs. NCVO boss Sir Stuart Etherington, often chided here for his pitiful output, suddenly came to life last week and banged out two tweets in a day. Subjects not riveting - legal advice and local council relationships - but it's a start. We expect great things.

- When the OCS finally published its list of Transforming Local Infrastructure winners, the partnership that got the largest sum - a tidy £965,000 - was Ealing Community and Voluntary Service, which covers an area including the London boroughs of Hillingdon and Harrow. Now that rings a bell ... ah, yes. Wards in those two boroughs make up the parliamentary constituency of Ruislip, Northwood and Pinner, where the MP is a certain Nick Hurd, the Minister for Civil Society.

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