TechUK slammed over support for Brexit deal

Self-appointed voice of the UK tech industry techUK has been hit by a Twitter backlash from some of the country's leading tech figures after calling for support for Theresa May's Brexit deal.

The lobbying group, which says it speaks for nearly a thousand technology firms across the UK, has been widely criticsed following a tweet in which it claimed "the tech sector" supported the Withdrawal Agreement put by the Prime Minister to the government yesterday.

"The tech sector is calling on MPs to back Withdrawal Agreement," the techUK Twitter account said, linking to a comment from the group's CEO Julian David.

Brexit tech

David said that the terms were, "the only solution on the table that can deliver on the outcome of the 2016 referendum whilst also securing jobs and investment in UK tech."

However techUK's claim was quickly criticised by many Twitter users, with hundreds of comments on the original tweet.

This included responses from some of the UK's leading technology figures criticising the call.

"For goodness sake - I find this astonishing," wrote Baroness Martha Lane Fox

"Speak for yourself. To whatever extent I am a voice within the UK tech sector, I am calling on MPs to back a People's Vote.  And I will campaign that we vote to reject this whole nonsense," wrote Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.

Other responses were far blunter, with one echoing an apparently popular view that, "you don't speak for me."

TechRadar Pro has contacted techUK, which counts the likes of Amazon Web Services UK, BAE Systems and Google among its members, for comment.

Mike Moore
Deputy Editor, TechRadar Pro

Mike Moore is Deputy Editor at TechRadar Pro. He has worked as a B2B and B2C tech journalist for nearly a decade, including at one of the UK's leading national newspapers and fellow Future title ITProPortal, and when he's not keeping track of all the latest enterprise and workplace trends, can most likely be found watching, following or taking part in some kind of sport.