By Anushka Asthana
Today In Focus / The Guardian (1/7/20)
Last August the Guardian columnist Owen Jones suffered a horrendous attack as he was out in London celebrating his birthday. In December three men admitted to the charge of affray. Next week a judge will decide whether one of the men, James Healy, was motivated by Jones’s sexuality.
Jones is convinced it will not be the last time he is attacked, and that is because he has become accustomed to being a target in person and online. In the past year he’s been repeatedly taunted in the street, including with homophobic abuse.
He tells Anushka Asthanawhat it is like to be a daily target of abuse, something he shares with many people in politics and the public eye. And what it is like to be at the heart of a Twitterstorm. Over Christmas, thousands of people tweeted abusive messages at him to get an offensive hashtag trending.