Sunday, June 1, 2008

May Numbers, Never Knowingly Undersold

May saw 722,219 page-views from 530,201 visits by 102,459 absolute unique visitors. Top referrers in order: Iain, ConservativeHome, Coffee House, PoliticalBetting and PoliticsHome.com.

To get these figures into perspective – The Guardian itself claimed 67,000 absolute unique visitors online in February for the Guardian Politics pages as measured by comScore. Deborah Summers, Guardian Online’s politics editor, is going to have to increase her readership by 50% to match Guido. More people are interested in reading Dale’s take on politics – who is the mass media now?

Guido’s most popular story of the month was the Richard Littlejohn slapdown of Polly Toynbee

For comparison here are some (non-blog) comparative absolute unique numbers as measured by comScore (February 2008):

BBC News UK Politics 1,090,000
itn.co.uk 96,000
theyworkforyou.com 69,000
Guardian Politics 67,000
barackobama.com 56,000
conservatives.com 40,000
bnp.org.uk 37,000
democraticunderground.com 32,000
labour.org.uk 29,000

This was Guido’s best month on record, no taxpayers were harmed in the production of the blog. Many thanks to advertisers.

Follow up with Deborah Summers here.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Bash a Politician – Get a T-Shirt!

Peter Hain’s demise began with the leak of one document – his leadership campaign’s budget. That tip set in train a process that led directly to him being investigated by the police for undeclared donations.

You make this blog happen. Sources are anonymous (unless you want credit*). Who is on the fiddle? Who is lying? If you know “the line” is a lie, ask yourself why you got into politics; was it to cover up the truth or tell it?

Skype gossip and tittle-tattle online to Guido.
(If you haven’t got Skype, download it free here.)

Guido’s blog relies on you for information.

Voicemail : 0709 284 0531
Fax : 0709 201 2337
Email : guido.fawkes@Order-Order.com

*You may get a “Conspiracy Member” T-shirt.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Guido Now Available Offline on Amazon’s Kindle

As part of Guido’s continuing contribution to saving the trees from slaughter and making himself ubiquitous this blog is now available offline to subscribers via Amazon’s Kindle reader.

Everybody is Twittering nowadays, rolling news keeps on rolling frenetically and somewhat pointlessly. Perhaps instead you need to download the 4000 or so articles Guido has written in the last 4 years and sit on a beach under a tree. Get a Kindle and you can, it is like an iPod for text. (You can read things called books on it as well.)

You are either in front of Guido, or behind…

Friday, May 9, 2008

The Blog You Love, They Hate

Julia Hobsbawm’s Editorial Intelligence held a soiree at the RSA on Wednesday about the “Power of the Commentariat“. They had surveyed a hundred or so of the pundit class and invited them to the event to discuss their findings. The great and the good of the chatterati voted Polly Toynbee the most influential columnist and (outside Big Media) Guido the most influential blogger in Britain. Some of the great and the good didn’t like that one little bit.
What insight did these editorial titans take from that? Simon Jenkins, Suzanne Moore, Charles Clarke and Polly obsessed about the uncouth comments from the co-conspirators and CiFers. They are the people. The people you don’t meet at Hampstead dinner parties or in the village deli of your Italian villa. The people who are sick and tired of the metropolitan elite can now tell you so at the bottom of your own article. Polly clearly hates the indignity of being told she is wrong by the CiF mob where her colleagues can see it and laugh along. They really don’t like it up ‘em do they?

Polly basically said Guido can’t be good because he doesn’t like politicians. Simon Jenkins reckoned Guido, Dale and ConservativeHome were too SW1-focused. Charles Clarke said we were self obssessed (nobody laughed). Suzanne Moore said Guido is a wanker in his bedroom. Daniel Finkelstein was the only one of the Commentariat to defend bloggers.

Lets deal with these in order:

  • Guido is cynical about politicians and their motives – as are most people outside the Commentariat – so what? Is that the wrong approach? Not in Guido’s judgement, forinstance apart from Matthew Parris, who of the Commentariat said Gordon Brown would be a total disaster and found out as such rapidly? From right to left he was applauded and lauded by the entire herd of metropolitan chatterers.
  • Guido does despise most politicians, unlike Polly, who showed her good judgement in boosting Gordon Brown so fervently. Now by her own admission, though even recently so full of admiration, she realises he is not up to the job.
  • Guido, Dale and Tim Montgomerie are political bloggers, so it would be odd if we did not in fact write about Westminster where they do, errrm, politics.
  • Charles Clarke’s comment is very odd because he is so full of amour propre as to be risible.
  • The humourless feminazi Suzanne Moore has said it before and she is still wrong. Guido has an office…

If you can bring yourself to listen to them whine at length, the podcast is here. Of the voices heard only Hobsbawm, Finkelstein and a chap from Microsoft “got it”, he said he thought it sounded like he had entered a room full of whigs complaining about pamphleteers. Exactly.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Stat-Porn April Drill Down :593,233 Pageviews from 406,732 Visits

All here in Google Analytical technicolour detail for downloading. Statcounter recorded 602,817 pageviews from 433,702 visitors. Guido won’t quibble…

Saturday, April 26, 2008

How to Hack Harriet Harman

As the government contemplates a law to criminalise “reckless” losses of data it is worth reflecting on the sophisticated data security employed by Harriet Harman to prevent hacking of her blog:
username : harriet
password : harman
The hacker also tells Guido that he used “log-less multiple proxies” – which are the internet equivalents of dead drops. Apparently.

UPDATE Sunday : Adam Boulton asked Harman on Sky if the story above was true (Adam, how could you doubt?) she sheepishly confirmed it to be the case.

Technical Problems

Overnight something has happened. Not sure if it is technical failure, a hacker attack or just a glitch. Everything is backed-up and will be restored in due course…

UPDATE : It was a glitch. Thanks to Dizzy for the solution.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Bloggers Force No. 10 to RemovePartisan Material on Website

Shane Greer wrote a story on Friday highlighting the links driving traffic from the Downing Street website to the Labour Party’s local elections campaign website. This breaches the Ministerial Code which states explicitly:
6.3 Official facilities and resources may not be used for the dissemination of material which is essentially party political.

or

8.4 Ministers must only use official machinery for distributing texts of speeches relating to Government business. Speeches made in a party political context must be distributed through the Party machinery.

Linking to the front page of the Labour Party website seems to Guido to clearly breach the rules.

The Cabinet Office issued specific guidance on 20 March 2008:


“Elections to Local Authorities in England and Wales and to the Greater London Authority – Guidance on Conduct for Civil Servants in UK Government Departments”

Under the heading “Communication Activities” it states…


“It is also important to take care with official websites which will be scrutinised closely by the news media and the political parties during election periods.”

The story was taken up by PJC and Wonko’s World. Wonko complained to a Mr Brown (no relation) on the Ethics Desk of the Cabinet Office. The link was gone yesterday afternoon. So much for the PR skills of the much heralded Carter imported Downing Street digital new media team. Guido has been compiling evidence of a pattern of systemic fraud by the Labour Party in abusing government resources for partisan purposes…

developing…

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

March Stat-Porn : 458,475 Page Hits from 352,291 Visitors

The most popular story last month was about Nick Robinson’s expenses and Cameron’s slap down of Ed Balls. Invariably the top referring sites to Guido over the last couple of years have been Iain Dale, ConservativeHome and PoliticalBetting.com. Of late however some of the Big Media political blogs have started coming up the rankings. This month (for the first time) the Speccie’s Coffee House blog sent more referrals than Political Betting, putting it at #3. Google sends more referrals by far, however the top ten referrers after Google and Yahoo are:

#1 Iain Dale
#2 ConservativeHome
#3 Coffee House blog
#4 PoliticalBetting.com
#5 Times Blogs (Red Box and Comment Central)
#6 BBC (Nick Robinson, Newsnight and Daily Politics)
#7 Telegraph Blogs
#8 Biased BBC
#9 Dizzy Thinks
#10 House Price Crash Forum

What this tells Guido is that Big Media is beginning to catch up on us new media insurgents. The surprise is that we have held the lead for so long. When you consider the resources being poured into blogging by media organisations with existing high traffic news sites and cross marketing opportunities, it is nothing short of phenomenal.

The Centre for Policy Studies produced some research comparing political blogs using data supplied by Hitwise. Hitwise uses technology embedded at network level with ISPs and is generally considered by the online industry to be the most reliable source of competitive data. Hitwise draws data from millions of British ISP accounts tracking internet activity. It does not rely on cookies or toolbars so is not skewed or possible to “game”.

The data above is for unique users. Below are some other well known (in the blogosphere) sites with surprisingly small traffic numbers. Ben Brogan’s blog is read by everyone in the Westminster village, but it seems to be read by few outside it. As you can see, Labour’s leading blogs just don’t have much of a reach in comparison to their right-of-centre equivalents.
Guido has bad news for his Big Media rivals, he has plans to ratchet up the content this year and the stickiness of the site to drive traffic over the million hits a month level…

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Vote for Dale – To Be On Celebrity Big Brother

Iain is feigning indecision methinks, in true blogging style he is polling the readers. Vote for him to go into the house…

Seen Elsewhere

Carswell, the Clacton Cassandra | James Ford
Love Bomb Carswell | ConservativeHome
Denis MacShane’s Ex is Now Hacked Off Spokesman | Speccie
How the Carswell Story Unfolded | Sky News
How to Defect | Telegraph
Carswell Defection Will Dismay Thoughtful Tories | ConservativeHome
Carswell: Darling of the Tories, Labour and Now UKIP | Speccie
Where is the Love? | Tom Watson
Tory Eurosceptics Weakened | Speccie
Thacker Played Down Scandal | Times
How Clegg Lost the Women of Britain | Sophy Ridge


VOTER-RECALL
Get the book Find out more about PLMR


Douglas Carswell’s side-kick Dan Hannan MEP pours water on the obvious question:

“I won’t be joining UKIP, though I wish Douglas Carswell all the best. He has been a superb MP, and it’s honourable to stand for re-election.”



Owen Jones says:

We also need Zil lanes.


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