According to the most read article on the Huffington Post this morning “If you type the key words ‘children’ and ‘bikini’ into an Internet search engine, you’ll find tens of thousands of results for child bikini contests.” In that sentence is the explanation for why the search engine optimised website is running a story – with a picture* – of an under-age girl in a bikini.
The editorially left-wing website campaigns against The Sun’s page 3 photos yet hypocritically boasts “Side Boob” – paparazzi pictures of celebs revealing more boob than they might wish – is the most popular part of the website. This is an attempt to have their cake and eat it, Carla Buzazi, the editor of HuffPo oversees a site with content bordering on soft porn that professes to be right-on when actually it is commercially cynical. It poses as a left-wing operation – going as far as hiring left-wing firebrand political commentator Mehdi Hasan – whilst simultaneously pretending to be a Luxembourg-controlled corporation to avoid UK taxes. In 2011 after AOL paid $315 million for HuffPo the unpaid blog writers filed a class action demanding a share of the payout. AOL fought the claim and paid the striking writers not a cent. Is Mehdi proud of his employer?
Former political editor Chris Wimpress has quit the site, he’d had enough and directly blamed Mehdi’s appointment, other staff are keen to escape and applying for jobs elsewhere. 5 staff have resigned in recent months, 3 without jobs to go to. Jimmy Maymann, AOL’s senior vice-president responsible for HuffPo told the Monaco Media Forum last week that AOL are unwinding the integration with HuffPo, “we’ve taken a step back — Huffington Post, within AOL, is a standalone business. Only with that way can you unlock the full potential…We are giving a two-year period to break even…” Claiming “right now AOL is a good owner for Huffington Post and we’ll keep it.” A signal the site could be sold by AOL in the not too distant future…
*We have blurred the image. HuffPo’s editor Carla Buzazi told Leveson that the site had joined the Press Complaints Commission and abides by the PCC Code of Practice, that picture almost certainly breaches the code.