Telegraph Cancels Christmas

The Telegraph usually throws a staff Christmas party every year, inviting everyone from execs to the newsroom to those who operate the customer services call centre for an end-of-year blow out. This year, due to budget cuts, no such party was held – each of the teams on the paper had to organise and pay for their own separate parties (if they were feeling at all festive). Do they know it’s Christmas time at all?

Telegraph’s Digital Revolution Eating Its Children

On Monday morning, a rumour went round the Telegraph newsroom that Malcolm Coles, the paper’s notorious digital guru, is being let go. Coles won’t give Guido an answer other than to say he hasn’t left yet. Multiple Telegraph sources say he has been given his notice. This is the digital revolution eating its children, it would be a harsh decision given bosses allowed Coles to bear the brunt of criticism for the dumbing down of content. Coles was brought in to oversee all the naff viral content and SEO optimisation that executives wanted and journalists and readers hated. It’s a marker of how the Telegraph do things these days that Coles’ colleagues have had to whisper to each other speculation about his demise…

Barclays Said to Want £250 Million for the Telegraph

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A rumour is going round the Telegraph newsroom that the paper is on the block for £250 million – though the mood of the Barclay brothers on this is said to be variable – they bought the group for £665 million in 2004. Multiple Telegraph sources have independently approached Guido this afternoon saying the Barclays are considering selling. Separately Guido understands that two consortia are circling…

UPDATE: A spokesman for the Barclays gets in touch with the same statement they sent out the last time these rumours circulated: “There are no plans to sell Telegraph Media Group or any part of it and there never have been.”

Telegraph Pol-Ed Dominiczak Joins Crosby Textor Fullbrook

dominiczak

Tells you everything you need to know about the dire situation at the Telegraph that their widely respected political-editor has, Guido can reveal, quit to join lobbyists Crosby Text Fullbrook Partners. Guido understands that Telegraph executives tried to convince him to stay. CTF’s reputation made it an opportunity too good to miss…

Telegraph Battling to Keep Political Editor

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Rumours are emanating from Telegraph towers that the paper is battling to keep its political editor Peter Dominiczak. There is speculation Dominiczak has tried to resign and that he wants to make some money in financial PR. Telegraph bosses are apparently trying to stop him from leaving. Tells you everything you need to know about the dire situation at the Telegraph that they’re battling to convince their widely respected pol ed not to quit journalism…

UPDATE: Guido hears special correspondent Tom Morgan, another talented and hugely well-liked journalist, has quit the paper. Sports writer Steve James has been made redundant. Education editor Javier Espinoza is also leaving despite only joining last year.

Losing Faith at the Telegraph

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Another departure from the Telegraph: the paper’s Religious and Social Affairs editor of five years John Bingham is leaving to spin for God, he’s the new comms chief at the Church of England. It means the former paper of the Tory Party at Prayer is now without a religious affairs editor. They are still without a Brussels correspondent as well – good thing Britain’s relationship with Europe is out of the news at the moment. Replacements to these key roles are not happening and Guido is told to expect a number of other imminent departures. Notices are being primed…

Telegraph Premium Teething Problems

telegraph front

Early teething problems for the new Telegraph Premium project? Several readers have been in touch to express their surprise that this was the front page of the Telegraph website this morning, splashing on Prime Minister’s David Cameron’s response to the Tata steel crisis. It also carried a story that the ONS were told to tell the truth on immigration before the EU referendum. Stories from a year ago. Oops…

Telegraph Fall For Philip May Parody Account

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The Telegraph had written 300 words and hit the publish button before they realised that a tweet from ‘Philip May’ about his conference suit was sent by a parody account. According to their report:

Philip May, husband of Prime Minister Theresa May, has taken to Twitter to reveal the outfit he wore to join his wife on stage at the Conservative Party conference is “model’s own”… Philip May has broken with this tradition, which has previously been criticised as sexist, and drew attention to it with a quip on social media. The Prime Minister’s husband wrote on Twitter: “Thank you for the kind words about my appearance at conference today. My suit – for those who asked – was from my wardrobe!”

Except he didn’t, the tweet was sent by an account clearly marked ‘parody’. The Telegraph article has now been deleted and lost down the memory hole forever. You can still read a cached version here

End of the Party for the Telegraph

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For the first time in recent memory there will be no Telegraph party at Tory conference. Traditionally the Torygraph bash has one of the more exclusive guestlists – Dave and George used to show up, Philip Hammond was once turned away – this year they’ve canned the whole thing. Sticking five figures behind the bar so execs can get sloshed with the Cabinet wouldn’t be a good look in a year when they’ve laid off so many journalists. Shame, the Facebook live stream would have gone totes viral…

Telegraph Exodus: Tim Ross Joining Bloomberg

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Guido hears the Telegraph’s respected Senior Political Correspondent Tim Ross is leaving to join Bloomberg. Author of ‘Why the Tories won‘, Ross pretty much writes the paper on Sundays so that will be a major gap to fill. He’ll be working for Bloomberg in Westminster with a focus on Brexit. The Lobby team at the Telegraph has so far been relatively incubated from job losses. But would you really want to stay?

Telegraph Digital Chief Admits Deliberately Trashing Brand

The video above shows Telegraph digital guru and “SEO consultant” Malcolm Coles speaking at the Brighton Search Engine Optimisation Conference last week. Coles admits – even boasts – that he has deliberately diminished the Telegraph’s brand in the pursuit of clicks from Google searches. It is what Telegraph readers and writers have long suspected, but it’s quite something for the loathed Coles to say it on camera:

Coles: “Click through rate is another important thing, so what we have to think about is a good headline.”

[The headline “Bow down to Kate Middleton’s new baby” comes up on the screen]

Coles: “This is a terrible headline for the Daily Telegraph, which is a quality news organisation. But it was amazing! It shot to the top of Google! And stayed there for ages… It’s not great from a brand point of view, but from a click though rate… getting these slightly quirky headlines in the news box means they tend to stay there for quite a long time”

Coles goes on to explain that the Telegraph has published a staggering 13,000 of those annoying “What time is?” articles, another trick to boost your Google juice. A newsroom veteran who watched Coles’ speech tells Guido:

“We’d always assumed Coles and [editor, Chris] Evans were blind to the damage they were our doing our newspaper in the desperate pursuit of numbers. Now we know it was a deliberate strategy.”

The video has gone down like a cup of cold sick in the newsroom…

Corbyn Called For “Complete Rehabilitation” of Trotsky

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Today’s Telegraph goes big on the news that Jeremy Corbyn once called for the “complete rehabilitation” of Leon Trotsky, reporting: It came to light after parliamentary staff on Monday uncovered a paper record of the demand in an underground archive in Westminster”. Truth is it came to light nine months ago, when Guido revealed that Corbyn had signed the EDM defending the mass-murdering communist. Commons authorities kindly took the document in question out of storage and had it copied for us in October last year. You’re either in front of Guido or reading it in the Telegraph nine months later…

You Won’t Believe the Telegraph’s Most-Read Story This Week

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The Telegraph’s obsession with clickbait and viral content is revealed in the “trending” team’s weekly bulletin to staff. What was the most-read story on the site this week? Their coverage of Cameron’s crony honours perhaps? Or maybe their excellent investigation into bribes paid to Iraqis to sue British troops? Alas not.

Most viewed story

This week’s top story – ‘End of the world? Doomsday believers predict the apocalypse’ – received 605,280 global page views.

Most read on the Telegraph this week was a liveblog about a crank YouTube video predicting the end of the world. From 7:42am until 9:19pm the website’s poor “social media content editor” was forced to blog updates about internet loonies discussing Armageddon. The paper doesn’t have a Home Affairs editor, but they have someone spending their whole day working on this. Still, the trending team and their “digital media” guru Malcolm Coles were delighted with the clicks. The irony of the paper’s most-read story being about doomsday has not gone unnoticed among staff…

Telegraph Offers Staff Tax Free Hipster Scooters

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Experienced journalists are being laid off at the Telegraph, but the hipster, trendy and trending content producers who still have jobs are being kept sweet. This poster is up in the loos at Buckingham Palace Road, offering Telegraph staff “two adult micro scooters for company workers to use at lunch time or to borrow at the weekends”.[…] Read the rest

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Media Mistakes Under Reshuffle Pressure

hunt truss telegraph

May’s fast-paced reshuffle is clearly frazzling some, with the Telegraph Politics first saying the new Justice Secretary Liz Truss had been moved to education, and then using a picture of Jeremy Hunt when referring to Gavin Williamson. They had one job…

Next a woman – sounding remarkably like Sky News reporter Beth Rigby – is heard exclaiming “Oh sh*t I dropped my phone” while trying to question Jeremy Hunt.[…] Read the rest

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READ IN FULL: Article Pulled By Telegraph After Pressure From Theresa May’s Campaign

may-terrible

Reproduced in full below is a Telegraph article by Jonathan Foreman* headlined “Theresa May is a great self-promoter, but a terrible Home Secretary”, which was pulled after pressure from her campaign. It is excoriating…

In the run-up to the 2015 election, one of the handicaps David Cameron had to finesse was the fact that net migration to the UK was three times as high as he had promised it would be.

[…] Read the rest

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Telegraph Pulled Article Critical of Theresa May After Campaign Pressure

Guido understands that an article by Jonathan Foreman headlined Theresa May is a great self-promoter, but a terrible Home Secretary” was pulled after pressure from her campaign. It has gone down the memory hole…

Click to Read the Article Telegraph Banned

Foreman was given various excuses by The Daily Telegraph as to why they had changed their mind and pulled the article.[…] Read the rest

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Telegraph Journalist’s “Kill Baby-Farage” Tweet

gee

Catherine Gee, a culture writer for the Telegraph, compares Farage to Adolf Hitler, founder of the Third Reich, responsible for the deaths of 85,000,000 people in World War II and initiator of the previous German attempt at a European superstate.[…] Read the rest

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WATCH Boris v Salmond LIVE

[…] Read the rest

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Computer Says No at Telegraph

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Missed your fill of Telegraph stories about men with two penises recently? As part of its ‘digital first’ focus the paper has implemented a disastrous new Content Management System, which fell over on six separate days in the last two weeks.[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +

Seen Elsewhere



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Quote of the Day

Responding to Corbyn’s statement that the US should have arrested ISIS leader, al-Baghdadi, John Mann bluntly tweeted:

Baghdadi blew himself up with a suicide belt. An arrest might have been slightly difficult in these circumstances.”

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