Glen McNamee
Twitter and #alicebucketlist
Posted on Nov 24, 2011 in Politics

It’s another post about something I’ve seen posted on a social network. This time it’s this message on twitter

A 15 year old girl who is terminal with cancer has made a bucket list. One of her wishes is to trend on Twitter. Give a RT #alicebucketlist

This sort a message can provoke a strong emotional response. Usually sadness about such a young girl having to suffer such a problem and possibly die shorty, then maybe when you read on you realise there is hope you can help this poor girl just by Retweeting the message,  you can move on with your life happy that you’ve help someone in such a sitution.

Except if you are a big old sceptic like me. If you are, you probably are full of follow up questions like, who is Alice? Is she a real person, if so is there anything else I can do to help. A quick Google search for “Alice 15 year old girl  terminal cancer” (alicebucketlist also works) reveals the following;

There is a 15 Year old Alice with Terminal Cancer called Alice, but she doesn’t have a wish to trend on twitter, she has wishes like “To get everyone eligible to join a bone marrow register” which are a little more demanding of people than pushing a single button on the internet.

So if you want to really help Alice. Why not visit her blog and facebook page, bid on her auction,or more importantly become a bone marrow donor, via the NHS, AnthonyNolan or one of the other donor registers around the world.

EDIT: Alice’s Bucket list hit the news in June,  when after creating her blog her local MP, John Woodcock, raised the issue of Bone marrow donation during prime minister’s questions.


  1. Neil Trodden says:

    +1 in the war on slackivism.

    My own thoughts were always “how sad that someone has such a pointless ‘last wish'” – I’m not sure I’ve ever shown anything other than contempt for most of the trending topics on Twitter.

  2. Becky says:

    Perhaps you should stop and think for a second, if you can manage that whilst finding the time to channel so much negativity in to the world, that by Alice trending on Twitter, many thousands more people will become aware of her, and of her plight. Following this, they will no doubt choose to find out more about her – and they will (like you with your marvellously large brain) type ‘Alice – cancer’ into Google, and they will then, like you, see that Alice has a bucket list with many greater wishes on there. Perhaps they will then (like you I assume) immediately sign up to become a bone marrow donor. Failing that, they might just buy a mug. Like I did. And by them buying a mug, perhaps we can take a tiny minuscule step towards beating cancer. Perhaps if everyone retweeted #alicebucketlist (thus causing it to trend), and all those individuals in turn bought mugs, we might actually raise enough money to take an even greater step towards finding a cure for the disease. So I suggest that while it has become extraordinarily fashionable to be ‘cynical’, that you think about the wider effect your cynicism may have on others. Because in this case, you are doing more harm than good. If people like you can muster up enough energy to write a full paragraph’s worth of a rant about such a thing, but cannot find it in their heart to retweet something by just ‘pressing a button’ when by doing so they might be spreading awareness about such a noble cause, then it is a far sadder and more cynical world than I thought.

    • Glen McNamee says:


      Thanks for the comment, although it’s a little difficult to read without an paragraph breaks.

      I’m not against #Alicebucketlist trending. What I’m saying is that the way message was written and retweeted was not true or complete and therefore not likely to get the real message of her bucket list across.

      I think something a tweet with accurate information with a link along the lines of the below would be much better.

      16 Year old Alice has Terminal Cancer. Can you help with her Bucket list? #alicebucketlist Read more here

      I think that would have desired effect, so I’ve just tweeted this myself.

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