Welcome To Zelo Street!

This is a blog of liberal stance and independent mind

Tuesday 30 April 2019

Rachel Riley Man United Claim BUSTED

[Update at end of post]

The mystery of Stop Funding Fake News - like, who is behind it and where it is based - deepens with the news that the most recent claims made for the campaign by Countdown numbers person Rachel Riley appear not to be true. As Zelo Street regulars will recall, SFFN lists its alleged successes under the heading “The following brands have said they will exclude The Canary, Evolve Politics, Politalite, Westmonster and Rebel Media from their advertising”. A whole load of well-known names are then listed.
Questions for whoever is behind this campaign ...

One of those is Manchester United Football Club, and it was from their Old Trafford stadium that Ms Riley told “I am at Old Trafford, and I just want to say a huge Thank You to Manchester United ahead of the derby. They’ve agreed to stop funding Fake News. They are total legends. I love you … my club. Thank you Man United”.
... and questions for her ...

There was one problem, though: no confirmation had been issued by the club that they had done what Ms Riley had claimed. So Simon Maginn Tweeted “Hi @ManUtd. Can you confirm or deny you've withdrawn advertising from certain websites as @SFFakeNews and @RachelRileyRR have reported? Thanks” to the club feed.
... over the claim made in this video

He then followed this up with an email, to which the club has now responded. And that response is very bad news indeed for Ms Riley. “Miss Riley is not an official ambassador or representative of Manchester United and we therefore cannot comment on her personal opinions.  Her comments and actions in no way reflect that of the club, however your comments have been noted and passed on to the relevant department”.
That, in not so many words, is MUFC dissociating itself from Rachel Riley. So it has to be concluded that the statement she made, to camera, outside Old Trafford is at best unproven, and at worst totally untrue. Or, as SFFN likes to call it, Fake News. That puts both of them in what Spike Milligan might have called A Very Difficult Position.
Simon Maginn was not impressed, and has Tweeted to Krishnan Guru-Murthy of Channel 4 News “Hi @krishgm … Thought this might interest you … You gave a long and respectful interview with @RachelRileyRR in January. It turns out she's lied outright. Her 'stop funding fake news' campaign turns out to be - well, fake news … Do you have any regrets about giving her a platform?” The response will make for interesting reading.
Meanwhile, Stop Funding Fake News has one rather obvious course of action it has to take if it wants to retain any last shred of credibility. For every one of those names it cites as having pulled advertising from the five sites listed, it must provide some form of citation as proof. An email or Twitter confirmation of the action will be sufficient.
Should SFFN be unable to provide that evidence, then the names concerned must be removed from its list of successes - accompanied by a suitably worded apology for having used them in the first place. Failing that, it could only be concluded that SFFN is not a credible campaign, and does not warrant taking seriously.

Where that leaves Rachel Riley’s credibility, and her standing with Channel 4, is for them to figure out. This campaign has developed not necessarily to her advantage.
Enjoy your visit to Zelo Street? You can help this truly independent blog carry on talking truth to power, while retaining its sense of humour, by adding to its Just Giving page at


[UPDATE 1755 hours: Rachel Riley has now told "There’s some fake news circulating re so here’s a touch of truth and a whole lot of goodness to counter more lies. Love my reds! ". She has referred to a Tweet from the Stop Funding Fake News feed.
This reads "Once again, we're so grateful to for standing up to the lies & bigotry of fake news websites by blacklisting them from the club's advertising ... This email is going straight up on our wall!" Attached is a redacted email from a Manchester United address.
So let me put Ms Riley and SFFN straight.

1 Calling "Fake News" and "Lies" does not make the target Fake or untrue, unless there are facts to back up the claim. This applies equally to her claim of "Truth".

2 If she is referring to this blog, she should say so.

3 The redacted email, as can be seen, refers to websites being blacklisted. However, it does not say which websites these are. It does not show what evidence was offered up to the club, or even whether the blacklisting is club policy. It does not tell us who is being addressed in the email.

4 The only conclusive evidence is to release the whole email thread. All of it. So we can see which sites were referred to, whether they had the club's advertising in the first place, and why any blacklisting should take place. Thus far, SFFN and Ms Riley have done plenty of name-calling, but provided precious little in the way of factual evidence.

As Zelo Street regulars will know, this blog deals in facts first and foremost, whatever abuse may accrue from those made uncomfortable. It would help SFFN and Ms Riley immeasurably if they were to do likewise]


Mark said...

Horrible barefaced hypocrite.

Anonymous said...

Wonder if the Taxpayers Alliance/Rconomic League are behind it..?

Anonymous said...

I cant work out whether she is deliberately vicious and disingenuous or whether she is just stupid and being influenced by some evil people.

Horrible person and the living embodiment of the phrase "beauty is skin deep"