MORTON chief executive Dave Mackinnon has apologised to fans after an online own goal saw supporters wrongly banned from club communication channels.

Mr Mackinnon says he 'inadvertently' blocked several individuals from the Ton Twitter page after launching a crackdown on 'unacceptable' language and personal attacks on members of staff following the team's 2-1 victory over Arbroath at the weekend.

One was a teenage boy, who has since been unblocked, who was barred for saying that manager David Hopkin's starting line-up was a 'joke'.

The Cappielow chief stands by his online statements calling out internet trolls - but admits a number of fans were wrongly banished from social media platforms.

They too have been unblocked and the former Kilmarnock and Dundee chief is also holding clear the air talks with a number of unhappy Morton supporters.

Mr Mackinnon told the Tele: "There's a code of conduct.

"There was a very small - less than a handful - of fans who had overstepped the mark and I'm meeting numerous fans this week to go through various bits and pieces with them.

"At the end of the day, all fans of the club appreciate that you can't be personal.

"What has happened is there was a line of tweets and a small amount were deemed to be inappropriate and personal. "During that process there were other tweets that were not offensive in any way and they were inadvertently blocked.

"I have personally apologised but what I'll be doing is speaking to them in a face-to-face. "They were all reinstated overnight so the only people who are blocked are the ones who overstepped the mark."

The Ton chief would not go into detail about the offensive posts, but says they were 'inappropriate' and 'very personal against members of staff and their families'.

He says he has a responsibility to protect Morton employees and strongly denied that the club is trying to silence supporters from expressing an opinion.

Mr Mackinnon said: "Absolutely not.

"The statement that was put out is not to quell any comments - negative or positive - from the fans because, at the end of the day, we have to listen to fans and I've been listening to fans from day one."

An initial message on the club Twitter page on Sunday evening warned supporters that they would be blocked for inappropriate conduct and content that officials deemed not to be in the 'best interest of the club and in the spirit of constructive challenge and support'.

The chief exec followed that up with a personal statement on Monday, welcoming 'constructive and engaging dialogue and feedback' from fans.

His remarks drew a backlash from Ton fans while supporters of other clubs joined in and criticised the move too.

Some fans even called for Mr MacKinnon to resign from his post, a suggestion he has laughed off.

Mr Mackinnon added: "If people are offended because I've stuck my head above the parapet and said 'wait a minute, this is unacceptable, we cannot accept this kind of behaviour'...I'm not doing my job properly if I choose to ignore that and sweep it under the carpet.

"For us to ignore this small amount, where do our standards lie if we ignore that?"

The Morton chief says steps are being taken to overhaul the club's communications strategy, including the launch of a new website, as part of a 'major rebuilding job' at Cappielow and following 'a lot of sideshows within the last six months'.