A moment of delicate diplomacy was skilfully undertaken by the Manx government this week.
It came on Tuesday morning after UK Prime Minister David Cameron had taken to Twitter the previous afternoon to say: ‘By staying united we have much more to share and much more to gain’.
The Tweet, from @number10gov in relation to Scotland’s bid for independence, appeared alongside a map of the United Kingdom – plus the Isle of Man.
Matters might have got out of hand at this stage. However, the Isle of Man Government responded via its Twitter account @iomgovernment with remarkable restraint.
At 10.04am it sent a shot across the PM’s bows in a nation’s defence, issuing a Tweet directly to Mr Cameron to say: ‘The Isle of Man works very closely with neighbouring nations, but is not part of UK. We are a self-governing Crown Dependency.’
This was followed 10 minutes later with a request to have the map altered: ‘Please could this map be corrected ... the Isle of Man is not part of the United Kingdom.’
The error was gleefully seized upon in typical style by many on Twitter.
One user issued an apology to the Isle of Man by saying: ‘I’m sorry @IOMGovernment our gov is stupid.’
Campaigners for Scottish independence were amused and impressed in equal measure by our government’s willingness to stand its ground.
One said: ‘@IOMGovernment Are you sure? @Number10gov tell us that it is impossible to not be part of the UK.’
Another said: ‘Well done IoM – a self-respecting Indy Celtic Nation – we will join you soon, love from #Scotland #indyref #YES.’