Why No Media Plurality Worries Over Mirror-Express Merger?

The usual suspects who raise a hue and cry about media plurality seem strangely silent about the Mirror – Express merger. Print sector media plurality is being dramatically reduced from four major media groups to 3 plus the also rans. The new group will have about a quarter market share of the UK dead tree press. As the print market withers it is turning oligopolistic…

Tom Watson is silent, the usual gobby ‘media plurality’ campaigners are also mute. The Guardian isn’t going on about the hackers at the Mirror not being fit and proper to take over the Express. There are genuine public interest concerns; plurality is being reduced and the distinctive political voice of the Express is being put at risk. Are plurality concerns only applicable to Rupert Murdoch?

mdi-timer 9th February 2018 @ 2:28 pm 9th Feb 2018 @ 2:28 pm mdi-comment Comments
Mail and Express Spare Theresa

Dacre and Desmond went all in with their praise for May’s manifesto and “social care revolution” last week, only to be made to look like chumps by the u-turn. The Mail and Express generously spare Theresa any front page blushes…

UPDATE: Though the Mail’s Stephen Glover tells Newsnight: “There’s no doubt the original policy was a cock-up and an own goal.”

mdi-timer 22nd May 2017 @ 10:43 pm 22nd May 2017 @ 10:43 pm mdi-comment Comments
Caroline Wheeler to Sunday Times

Congratulations to Sunday Express political editor Caroline Wheeler, who MediaGuido hears will be the new deputy political editor at the Sunday Times from July. A smart hire, Caroline was one of the few journalists who reported definitively that there would be an early election. She has plenty of Sunday Lobby experience and will now enjoy a deserved wider audience. From one Brexit-backing paper to another…

mdi-timer 24th April 2017 @ 9:39 am 24th Apr 2017 @ 9:39 am mdi-comment Comments
Impress Regulators Seek to Financially Ruin Three Papers

The second instalment of MediaGuido’s Impress File reveals attempts by the state-endorsed press regulator to financially ruin three newspapers. Several senior figures at Impress support the so-called Stop Funding Hate (SFH) campaign to boycott advertising in the popular press. SFH’s stated aim is to “take on the divisive hate campaigns of the Sun, Daily Mail and Daily Express by persuading advertisers to pull their support”. It wants to prevent newspapers from “making money by publishing these headlines”. SFH is bullying advertisers to censor or bankrupt the three centre-right newspapers read by millions of Britons.

Impress CEO Jonathan Heawood is a vocal supporter and campaigner on behalf of SFH. He has promoted social media posts from SFH aggressively targeting Boots and HSBC into removing ads from MailOnline. He has a pinned tweet in support of an advertising boycott of the Mail. He has shared an SFH article summing up their approach to free speech: “Voltaire… never said I will defend to the death your right to get advertising revenue”.

Impress board member and chair of its code committee Marie Messenger Davies also regularly expresses support for the SFH campaign. Davies has repeatedly promoted posts calling for an advertising boycott of the Mail in particular. Emma Jones, a member of the Impress board and code committee, also regularly promotes SFH Impress actively campaigns to bankrupt three newspapers – how can it possibly be a fair and balanced regulator of the press?

The Daily Mail and MailOnline have a readership of 23 million a month, The Sun is the most-read newspaper in Britain. Latest figures show the Express is growing online by 16% year-on-year. Millions of free-thinking readers choose to read these publications every day, SFH is an cabal of so-called ‘liberals’ trying to shut down the right-of-centre popular press. This raises serious questions for the government: how can Impress possibly be a fair and even-handed regulator when key figures within Impress are campaigning to ruin several newspapers? Regulators would not be allowed to behave in this way in any other industry…

mdi-timer 19th December 2016 @ 2:00 pm 19th Dec 2016 @ 2:00 pm mdi-comment Comments
Express Reviews Desmond’s Book… Five Stars!

“He displays a fine line in self-deprecating wit,” says Virginia Blackburn, in a 5-star review of Richard Desmond’s new book. For the Express…

mdi-timer 19th June 2015 @ 3:25 pm 19th Jun 2015 @ 3:25 pm mdi-comment Comments
Confirmed: Desmond Gives a Million to UKIP

As Guido reported earlier, and the Express have now confirmed in an ‘exclusive’, Richard Desmond has opened his chequebook and donated a million pounds to UKIP. He says:

“I firmly believe in Ukip. It’s a party for good, ordinary British people. It is not run by elitists. They are struggling to have a voice. They do not have a massive party machine or highly paid public relations people. They are human; they are not perfect and they do not pretend to be. But what they believe in is the best for the British people. They are the sort of people who will stand up for people who are struggling.

I don’t believe Cameron has delivered on his promises. I don’t want to be a member of a club. As Groucho Marx said, I don’t want to join any club that would have me as a member. I always have challenged the establishment and I want to continue to challenge it. I’m giving this money because I believe….as Emerson, Lake and Palmer might put it… Ukip’s political outlook is a ‘fanare for the common man. I want to back our customers, Daily Express readers, who believe in many of Ukip’s common-sense policies on the EU and immigration and taxation. That is why I am putting my hand in my pocket; it is for my customers, my readers. I hope by doing this, it will encourage more people to do the same. 

I want them to stand up like me and be counted. I believe there are still people out there who are frightened to stand up for something new and I hope they will follow my example.”

You read it here first…

Understand the donation came as a surprise to UKIP. Senior staffers, as well as press officers did not know it was coming when Guido put it to them three hours ago. Their laughs of ‘no way’ were genuine…

mdi-timer 16th April 2015 @ 5:45 pm 16th Apr 2015 @ 5:45 pm mdi-comment Comments
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