Nothing wrong with damaging the Beeb - not in the minds of the inhabitants of the Northcliffe House bunker. But all has changed with the appearance on the media horizon of Gammon Broadcasting News (“Bacon’s News Channel”), which has attracted the attention of the people at Stop Funding Hate. Suggesting to advertisers that they should not have their brands associated with GB News has sent the Mail apoplectic.
So much so that yesterday brought this classic Daily Mail headline: “The hatred of the Stop Funding Hate fanatics: They vilified GB News even before it launched and claim to fight for tolerance - but foul-mouthed trolling is par for the course, writes GUY ADAMS”. Adams finds a series of social media users who have aggressively targeted GB News advertisers and declared them to be the same as SFH, even though they clearly are not.
In support came “Revealed: The hard left Corbynista zealots campaigning to cancel GB News include vegan professional cat-sitter, a gender and sexuality studies teacher and an ex-BBC executive … Stop Funding Hate insists it 'not linked to, or aligned to, any political party’ … But its leadership appear to be left-wing pro-Labour and pro Jeremy Corbyn”. The Mail appears to be an unprincipled crock of crap, but hey ho. And there was more.
That targeting of SFH was an organised Mail hit job was confirmed when talentless churnalist Richard Littlejohn, so British that he has lived for decades in the USA, declared SFH to be a protection racket, like that run by the Kray twins and their pals. “SFH has been stoking up a tedious Twitterstorm to bully advertisers into boycotting the station. Their message is clear: advertise with GB News and we will destroy you” he blusters.
As opposed to the Mail telling Slebs and Royals to cooperate with them, or … you get the picture. SFH has been the target of vicious press hit-jobs more or less since it started. But the latest twist shows that the Mail is not only worried about the potential effect of an advertiser exodus on GB News’ continued viability, it gives the impression that it is not a disinterested party. Like being invested in shifting the Overton Window rightwards.
The Mail, and all the other parts of our free and fearless press that have been shilling for GB News, have good cause to be concerned: the new channel has thus far demonstrated poor production values, the dark and austere sets are hardly welcoming, viewer numbers - despite former Murdoch editor Andrew Neil’s claims - are gradually subsiding, and flagship presenters like the deeply unpleasant Dan Wootton come over as worryingly inept.
Moreover, content is already being recycled - this evening sees a Brillo highlights show, so it appears The Great Man only appears four evenings a week. As does Wootton, who’s not “Live” this evening. Meanwhile, those the channel might have been expected to poach - think Nick Ferrari, or even Julia Hartley Dooda - have wisely stayed put.
If GB News is any good, it won’t need the Mail to shill for it. I’ll just leave that one there.
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