Stat-Porn : Give Guido the Crown Back Iain

Normal service has returned, Guido has got the crown back from Iain, with 305,624 unique visitors making 423,598 page loads last month. More people visited Guido than any other comparable political website.

The biggest referrers are (in order) Iain, ConservativeHome and PoliticalBetting. As Big Media becomes more blog-centric it is interesting to see how they are faring comparatively – it implies their relative traffic. The BBC is the biggest source of Big Media traffic from their politics pages and the Newsnight site. They are followed by the Times and the Speccie courtesy of Comment Central and Coffee House.

This suggests that Ben Brogan, Sky’s Boulton & Co and the Telegraph political blogs are critical but not box office successes – yet. For what it is worth, Guido suspects the Telegraph is making the same mistake that the Guardian made with CiF – too many bloggers. Successful blogs need strong personalities and a clear voice. Readers faced with multiple authors and too many choices of variable and unknown quality decide to click on what they know best, rather than waste time clicking on the unknown. There is a time cost to information overload even when “comment is free”.

The other pressing question is, are these blogs commerically sensible? Paying journalists to write on low traffic blogs is not a commercially sustainable model. Politics is not popular outside the political elite, far more people watch Sky Sports than Sky News, Murdoch runs the latter as a loss leader. With losses at the Guardian, Telegraph and Indy’s online operations continuing to mount without end, the penny will drop with proprietors eventually. Big Media can do it, can do it well even, but who will pay the elephant to dance?

On that note, Guido would like to thank his advertisers this month for their support and contribution to profits.

Amazon – The Bumper Book of Labour Sleaze will fit in a Christmas stocking.
Anne Summers – Get your sexy Christmas stockings, and something for her as well.
Argos Online – They deliver toys.
Backlash – Kinky libertarians.
Betfair – Clegg or Huhne? Place your bets.
18 Doughty Street – See you next year in your new form.
eBay – For everything.
Hamleys – Forgotten that present for your Godchild?
La Senza – Christmas is coming.
Laithwaites – Booze to the door.
Lastminute – Go Ski, go Caribbean.
Norwich Union – Socially responsible, unlike Guido.
Total Recall – That Alastair Darling ad was the best of the month.
War on Want – Have a right on, ethical winter festival.
Westminster Live – Studios overlooking Parliament.

To advertise on this and many other fine political sites contact on 020 7107 2280.

Sun’s Clever Trevor Now Predicts Brownies Doomed

Trevor Kavanagh is the sage of Wapping. Today his regular Monday Sun column says definitively
“Gordon will never govern in his own right as an elected Prime Minister.”

Trevor Kavanagh appears to have done an about turn. Cast your mind back a few months (Monday, July 23rd) Kavanagh told us equally confidently that

“Gordon Brown is going to win—and win big. In the process he will likely set Labour up for a fifth term and 20 unbroken years of socialism.

Guido suspects that Mystic Meg’s job on the Sun is safe…

Now Indy Plagiarises Entire Blog Concept

Guido has just noticed that the Indy has a new blog, Open House. The distinctively chocolate coloured blog has a certain familiarity about it, running a daily “pick of the commentators”. It is early days but it must be somewhat disappointing that the posts are comment free. Post after post has “0 Comments”. Clearly nobody is reading the blog.

Why should they? The Open House blog is a complete rip-off of the format of Danny Finkelstein’s Comment Central blog, which lists comment from The Times and then comment from other papers. His team do it somewhat better and more comprehensively, which might explain why one of their posts got 1000 comments. The Indy is really going through a poor patch, cutting ‘n pasting government press releases for the front cover and stealing ideas from rivals which it then executes inferiorly. Sad…

Not Clever, Not Confident

Sir Michael White @ 10.06 on the Guardian website
Did you hear Admiral Lord West, GB’s newly-recruited security minister on Radio 4’s Today, scene-setting for the PM’s security statement to MPs? He is supposed to be an amateur politician, a refugee from the hearties at the MoD. Yet he was clever and confident. He ducked all the tricky questions without sounding naff or cross, and he said he wasn’t yet persuaded of the need to extend the 28-day pre-charge detention option.

Turned out to be a little less “clever and confident” later in the day didn’t he? He was very quickly persuaded…

Dacre’s last Days?

Paul Dacre has been off work for the last three weeks with “gastric flu” (trans. his heart condition is playing up). In fact his absences this year have been numerous. Rumours are flying around that the dark days of the Dacre regime may be coming to an end at the Daily Mail. The colony of ex-Mail hacks at the Telegraph is speculating feverishly that an announcement could be made as early as next week. Dacre would they believe be moved upstairs, keeping all perks, as is the tradition since Sir David English.

Betting is that his replacements could either be Peter Wright (editor of the Mail on Sunday) or Veronica Wadley (editor of the Evening Standard). Peter Wright’s MoS has been the scourge of Gordon with barely a week passing without Labour being lambasted on the front-page. Veronica Wadley is also known as Mrs Bower, her husband Tom being the author of an unauthorised biography of Gordon Brown which the Brownies regard as a hatchet job.

Gordon will be further depressed by either outcome, after cultivating and bending towards Dacre’s special world view for so long and at such cost, it seems tragically likely that his great ally in the right-wing press will no longer be in a position to boost him. The end of the Dacre regime will be particularly welcomed by Cameroons who have not appreciated the sniping from their right flank. Gordon’s luck really has run out…

New Media versus Old Media

The news that the Telegraph lost £10m last year encourages Guido to believe that in the coming years the truth will slowly dawn on loss making media moguls. Comment is just a click away. Good quality comment is free of charge at places like ConservativeHome, PoliticalBetting and UK Polling Report. The value of your paper pundits will therefore decrease to zero. The “we know best” gatekeeper mentality just won’t do.

To all those media executives shaking their heads, don’t forget that this blog is more profitable than the Telegraph, Independent and Guardian combined. Better value for readers as well…

[See also Henry Blodget’s fisk of a speech from AP’s Tom Curley.]

Stephen Glover was one of the founders of the Indy and he still writes a weekly media column for the paper. All credit to him for this morning in his column covering and criticising the editor of the paper for Indy-gate. Some thought it amusing that it had been unmentioned in his column of last week. (Guido did inquire of Glover if he would be covering it when it went without comment).

“You can’t expect him to criticise his own editor in the paper” Guido was told by other hacks. Well he did. Independent? Glover is.

Dacre Officially Enters Gordon’s Tent

In what many think is designed to provide Dacre with a “public service” excuse for his peerage, Gordon has appointed him to oversee a review of the 30 Year Secrecy Rule.

Dacre’s other public services; warning the public about gypsies, immigrants, alco-pops and such-like are deemed not good enough to earn him the ermine. Guido thinks editors should sup with politicians with a long spoon, getting in their tent and having a cozy breakfast in the morning with them is unwise. Perhaps it was secrecy that they discussed over the breakfast kippers

Is the email working at the Indy? The phones definitely seem to be playing up, last time Guido called to talk to Andy Grice the line went dead. So just in case Guido’s email to him on Monday went



Indy-Gate Scandal at Independent

The Indy-gate scandal is gathering momentum in the media following Kelner’s un-apology.
  • Dan Hannan in the Telegraph is derisory about the Indy’s misinformation.
  • Roy Greenslade in his widely read (by hacks) Guardian blog returns to the issue for a



Indy-gate : Issue is About Journalistic Ethics, Not the EU

The Indy’s editor-in-chief Simon Kelner, attempting to defend the reprinting of an FCO press briefing as original journalism, claimed that “The Eurosceptics, who have monopolised this debate for so long, appear to be shooting the messenger because they don’t like



Indy-gate : Fax Over A Press Release -If It Is True, We’ll Put It On the Front Page

The Indy’s editor-in-chief, Simon Kelner has finally given a comment to the Guardian :

“What we printed was a collection of facts, which our political editor independently verified. The source doesn’t really make a material difference. What matters is whether



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Quote of the Day

Lord Sugar on Jeremy Corbyn:

“If they ever got anywhere near electing him and him being the Prime Minister then I think we should all move to China or somewhere like that and let this place just rot.”

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