Franz Ferdinand frontman Alex Kapranos in Wikipedia dispute


FRANZ Ferdinand frontman Alex Kapranos has bitterly complained that “nationalists” keep changing his Wikipedia entry to say he is English.

After living in Scotland for more than 30 years – and fronting one of the county’s most famous rock bands – Kapranos refers to himself as Scottish.

Now the 40-year-old is furious with internet users who keep changing his entry on the free internet encyclopaedia to make him an “English musician”.

It appears Kapranos himself is changing his nationality back to Scottish on Wikipedia.


Kapranos is angry because he moved north with his parents when he was seven, went to primary school in Edinburgh, high school in Bearsden, East Dunbartonshire, and the University of Strathclyde.

Kapranos fumed to his 52,316 followers on Twitter yesterday (wed): “How long do you have to live in a country before you are considered from there?

“I moved to Scotland aged seven. I’ve been there 33 years. Yet there are nationalists who ‘correct’ my Wikipedia page.”

Kapranos, who was born in Gloucestershire to an English mother and Greek father, added: “I’m Scottish, of Anglo-Hellenic descent. Stick that in your bagpipe and smoke it.”

It appears Kapranos himself is changing his nationality back to Scottish on Wikipedia.

The editing records for the site show it was switched back around the same time he took to Twitter to complain.

His remarks come a day after official crime figures appear to show anti-English racism on the rise in Scotland.

Police statistics show racial attacks against “white British” victims soared by 24% on the previous year.

His remarks sparked a fierce debate on Twitter with not all of Kapranos’s followers appearing sympathetic.
One commented: “Some might say, if you’re born in England you’re English.”

Kapranos hit back: “Would you apply that to someone born in India who’d spent all their life in Scotland and thought of themselves as Scottish?”

Jim Young tweeted: “No offence Alex but back in my day you had to be born in the country to be that nationality but you couldn’t pick a better one.”

Bryan Gregg wrote: “Yer English son, deal wi’ it J”

Others backed Kapranos. Grainne Braithwaite said: “I was born here and moved back here 15 years ago and according to Scottish people I’m not Scottish either so don’t take it personally.”

Cath Discbton added: “National identity should always come from within. If you think you’re Scottish, then Scottish you are.”

One user, Polina, questioned why Kapranos was searching for himself on the internet, asking: “Don’t say that after all these glorious years you still Google yourself?”

Alex replied: “Keeps you sane, which is why you should never Google yourself. In the worst scenario you might find nothing.”

One user edited the singer’s information on Wikipedia on July 16 this year replacing the words “Scottish musician” with “English musician.”

Another user, called Lockesdonkey, added in late August “(raised partly in Scotland)” after the words “English musician.”
However, today an anonymous user changed Kapranos’s profile back to say “Scottish musician.”

Franz Ferdinand, currently working on their fourth studio album, formed in 2002 and became one of the biggest indie-rock bands of the noughties.

Kapranos met drummer Paul Thomson at a party and the duo played in Glasgow band The Yummy Fur before forming Franz Ferninand.

The band went on to have three hit albums, including platinum-selling You Could Have Had it So Much Better, in 2005.


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  1. The other tweeters are right. Sure, you can be from somewhere else, like i’m currently from the state of Nebraska, but I wasn’t born there.

    And your nationality is where you were born, regardless of where you went to live later. Now if it was the sort of thing where your mother had you while your parents were traveling out of country and you returned home to another country, then I would concede that the original home of your parents is your nation.

    But that’s not what happened here. Kapranos was born in England and raised in England. he didn’t go to Scotland until much later.

    Sorry, dude, but you’re English.

    Regardless though, it’s best for the article to not take sides on this sort of thing, which is why I changed it to United Kingdom based, which is broader and encompasses both regions. Problem solved.

  2. I think youll find it is English Wikipedia editors who most commonly make these sort of edits. Look at the discussion pages on other Scottish athletes, performers etc. They can’t bear the idea of someone born in England refusing to subscribe to being English

  3. @ Harry: While I can’t comment on other editors in this topic area, it seems to me that being born in England means you’re English. You can subscribe to being whatever you want (King of Mars, perhaps?), but that doesn’t make you not English.

  4. As that great Englishman, Robert Brus, once said “It’s shyte being Scottish.” (sarc)

    Alex, you’re a Scot and proud of it. Ignore the wingers and keep making great music. We’ll keep buying your albums and digging the grooves. Slainte m’Hath, mate!

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