The Daily Mail: let’s kick arse and take names

This entry was posted on
Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008
11:58 am and is filed
under Old Media.

[UPDATE (06 Sep) – Exciting NEW link! –> The Daily Mail (actually, genuinely) responds at last! <-- Will have no impact on this post, as its work is done and plans are afoot. Mwahahahahaha!]

[You know this is going to be a fun post, because it comes in two exciting parts. Please stand by to share with family and friends and any bloggers you might now… there’s plenty of names to be taken and arses to be kicked.]

Part One

It is now a week since I first went on the record and declared that Julie Moult is an idiot.

The article that started all of this is riddled with errors and fallacies, but the two that most people find easiest to grasp are as follows:

1. What Moult describes is not a Google bomb, and Google themselves have pointed this out.

2. Google bombing did not start “in the early 90s” (i.e. 5-6 years before Google existed).

Got that part?


I now invite you to take a closer look at the article… just to see if you can see what I can see:

Daily Mail grab #1

Have you spotted it yet?


Maybe you’d care to look closer:

Daily Mail grab #2

Yes, for starters, it’s apparent that the article has not been updated since 11:25 PM on 22nd August 2008, despite the presence of two glaring errors.

Many bloggers and other web users are aware of those glaring errors. In fact, literally tens of thousands of web users have taken an interest in my article, those errors and the author behind them (including people at 36 different workstations at Associated Newspapers, according to my stats).

As I mention here, I initially sought to bring one of those errors to their attention via comments (the good people at the Daily Mail make a big deal about their allowing comments under every article, yes they do).

I submitted this; “What you describe here is not a Googlebomb, but what Google regards to be relevant image result. Google themselves told you that, but you didn’t listen.”

And…. ah, I see that almost everybody out there can now see what I see… but just in case there is any lingering doubt, let’s zoom in even closer:

Daily Mail grab #3

Yep, that’s right.

No comments. Not one.

Let’s take a look at that again, just in case we missed one:

Daily Mail grab #3

Nope. Not a sausage.

After thousands and thousands of visitors that have dropped by knowing that there is something wrong with this article, not one comment has been published about it and not one change has been made.

And if that’s not bad enough, The Daily Mail then go on to lie about it:

Daily Mail grab #4

“No comments have so far been submitted”…?

What a pack of lying bastards.

Rather than admit that they made a mistake, the Daily Mail have instead followed the example set by Iain Dale; they have let outright falsehoods stand, resisted any attempt to address the matter via comments, and also given the false impression that the article has been subject to reader scrutiny all this time.

And it looks like they’ve been at it for years.

MINI-UPDATE – As I write this, I discover that Stewart Kirkpatrick submitted a comment, too. I’m sure there are plenty of others who have shared a similar experience involving this article alone. This self-serving censorship happens all the time at the Daily mail website and every savvy web user knows it.

Part Two

I waffled on a bit in that first part. I’ll try to be more direct and to the point in this next part. How’s this for starters?

Would like a word

This Googlebomb nonsense is the mere tip of the iceberg. I’ve seen far worse, and odds are that you have too.

I’ve had a gutful of the Daily Mail making their readers worry about stuff just isn’t real. I think they’re well overdue for some serious scrutiny and I find myself in a unique position to do something about that… with your help.

Bigdaddymerk runs Daily Mail Watch, which is currently one of the top search results for ‘daily mail’ and only a quick refit away from being a serious contender for top search results relating not only to that tabloid’s name, but also key articles, issues and columnists. I’ve been in touch, and he’s keen to play ball.

– I’ve just brought a dozen or so editors together for The Sun: Tabloid Lies. It’s early days, but I think I’m onto something with the specialty-based work-sharing and the tactic of documenting clear and obvious cases of this tabloid deceiving the reader.

The rest writes itself.

If you are the author of an established weblog, and you would consider committing maybe an hour or two a week to documenting the lies and falsehoods of the Daily Mail (focusing on a subject, speciality or columnist of your choosing), then I’d like you to get in touch using the following email address:

bloggerheads DOT com AT googlemail DOT com

[Note – Make sure to include the URL of your weblog (and/or links to any past articles you have written about the Mail), plus any task preferences you may have and/or any special skills you can bring to the table. I’d also like to hear from anyone who thinks they can help with the practical side of the build and/or anyone who would be more interested in targeting The Sun… or maybe even The Express, a tabloid that’s full of righteous anger and owned by a pornographer.]

Then, shortly, we’ll all sit down with Bigdaddymerk and have a private chat about tasks, missions, and tactics.

Ideally, the broad aim of the new Mail project will be to waste less time barking at the liars, by instead reaching out to the readers who are subjected to their lies on a daily basis.

Those readers will probably never change their politics or stop worrying about young people causing cancer and affecting house prices, but they may calm down a bit and they might even stop buying the Mail every day if they realise that a lot of the stuff in it has been invented, misrepresented, or blown out of all proportion.

So what do you say, internets?

I say those bastards at the Mail are due a jolly good kicking.

I say the time has come for us to form an ugly mob orderly squad and pile on blindly cut into their circulation with surgical precision.

Shouty Lewis Prothero in V for Vendetta

UPDATE – Heh. Don’t be afraid to throw your hat in, but I’d best point out before it’s too late that competition for the Richard Littlejohn gig is already fierce.


About Tim Ireland

Tim is the sole author of Bloggerheads.
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