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Corpsey
04-11-2016, 10:04 AM
I'm sure we're all aware of today's Mail cover:

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CwXwe6AXUAQsiCp.jpg

Pathetic stuff, but it gave me cause to recall this article I recently read in the Gruniad re: the tabloids:

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2016/oct/27/revenge-of-the-tabloids-brexit-dacre-murdoch

The Mail website is of course one of the most visited on the web, but a hefty slice of that reach must belong to those who are after sleb scandal stuff, upskirt shots, etc. The paper itself has a national circulation somewhere in the region of 2 million. In the Gruny piece it's argued that the tabloids, like the broadsheets, are losing readers all the time, and are therefore becoming more and more desperate to attract attention and readers with sensational headlines.

OTOH the Brexit vote seemed to show that the tabloids still wield an influence disproportionate to their circulations. Or is that an illusion? Do the tabloids really reflect the popular mood, rather than dictating it, especially in an era where newspapers are either going under or on the verge of it?

vimothy
04-11-2016, 10:26 AM
the Brexit vote seemed to show that the tabloids still wield an influence disproportionate to their circulations.

How so?

luka
04-11-2016, 10:32 AM
How so?

obtuse, even by your exalted standards.

luka
04-11-2016, 10:33 AM
You represent, my good Hobson, the dregs of Anglo-Saxon civilization: there is absolutely nothing softer upon the earth. Your flabby potion is a mixture of the lees of Liberalism, the poor froth blown off the decadent Nineties, the wardrobe-leavings of a vulgar bohemianism with its headquarters in the suburb of Carlyle and Whistler. You are concentrated, highly-organized barley-water: there is nothing in the universe to be said for you: any efficient state would confiscate your property, burn your wardrobe -- that old hat and the rest -- as infectious and prohibit you from propagating.

Wyndham Lewis

Corpsey
04-11-2016, 10:37 AM
How so?

See that Gruny article:

Yet on 23 June 2016, almost two years to the day after Gapper had written their obituary, one of the biggest, oldest dreams of the tabloids came spectacularly to life, when Britain voted to leave the EU, against the predictions of most broadsheet commentators. It was an outcome for which the tabloids had campaigned doggedly for decades, but never more intensely – or with less factual scrupulousness – than this spring and summer, when the front pages of the Sun, Mail and Express bellowed for Brexit, talking up Britain’s prospects afterwards, in deafening unison, day after day. Two days before the referendum, the Sun gave over its first 10 pages to pro-Brexit coverage.

Corpsey
04-11-2016, 10:58 AM
WRONG THREAD

vimothy
04-11-2016, 12:29 PM
Thanks, man.

vimothy
04-11-2016, 12:34 PM
I don't think that the Brexit vote proves anything about the influence of the tabloids, though. Large numbers of people have always been skeptical of the EU, and there are significant social factors (immigration, economic stagnation, etc) that have increased this skepticism.

vimothy
04-11-2016, 12:39 PM
Blaming the tabloids (whose readership is tiny (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_newspapers_in_the_United_Kingdom_by_circul ation#2010_to_present) and dwindling every day) is more a sort of deflection of reality, a rationalisation of events from people who can't ever conceive of being wrong.

Mr. Tea
04-11-2016, 12:58 PM
I don't think that the Brexit vote proves anything about the influence of the tabloids, though. Large numbers of people have always been skeptical of the EU, and there are significant social factors (immigration, economic stagnation, etc) that have increased this skepticism.

You surely can't deny that many people have an exaggerated idea of the drawbacks of EU membership, and an under-appreciation of the benefits (if they're prepared to admit there are any benefits at all), as a direct result of what they read in the majority-Euroskeptic popular press?

(Well, obviously you can deny it. But I think you'd be wrong.)


Blaming the tabloids (whose readership is tiny (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_newspapers_in_the_United_Kingdom_by_circul ation#2010_to_present) and dwindling every day) is more a sort of deflection of reality, a rationalisation of events from people who can't ever conceive of being wrong.

Average daily sales do not, by a long shot, reflect the total reach of the press. I hardly ever buy a paper these days but it's impossible not to see the headlines of the major dailies every time I use a supermarket, newsagent, corner shop or petrol station. And I firmly believe the headlines and the cover photos get across 75% of the message, if not more. You needn't even read the articles.

Edit: and as droid points out, that doesn't even touch on these papers' online presence.

droid
04-11-2016, 12:58 PM
Er... doesnt the UK tabloid circulation still amount to about 8 million in total? And of course, there's the multiplier effects of agenda setting, flak, and the most obvious - online readers - 14 million monthly UK readers for the mail site with 230 million monthly international readers, and you can x that by social media shares massively extending reach.

droid
04-11-2016, 01:01 PM
So you might be talking half of the UK (probably more) visiting tabloid or euroskeptic news sites every month - or more often.

vimothy
04-11-2016, 01:12 PM
So taking all of the tabloids as a group, their daily circulation is about 10% of the population. Is that really enough to be driving the Brexit vote?

Corpsey
04-11-2016, 01:22 PM
That's a good point re: the reach being about more than sales. I don't think the Guardian article denies that the tabloids are still exercising a great deal of influence, particularly in terms of framing debates around immigration, the EU, etc.

Compare that total readership to : 'The BBC News at Ten is currently the most watched news programme in Britain, averaging 4.9 million viewers each night.'

vimothy
04-11-2016, 01:23 PM
That's only a single programme, though -- but still, add in multiplier effects, plus shares on social media...

droid
04-11-2016, 01:48 PM
So taking all of the tabloids as a group, their daily circulation is about 10% of the population. Is that really enough to be driving the Brexit vote?

Taking them as a group and including online readers they have a higher circulation than anytime in history, maybe more than 50% of the UK.

vimothy
04-11-2016, 01:53 PM
Yes, but it's pretty complicated when you take online figures into account. I mean, what articles are they actually reading? What other sites do they visit?

Here are some online figures that suggest that the BBC is far and away the most influential online news source (with five times the viewing figures of DMG Media, the Daily Mail's parent group).


A survey reveals that the top 10 biggest media publishers are responsible for nearly two-thirds of the news consumed by British people online.

An analysis, based on the desktop and mobile page views in the UK in 2015, shows that they generated 65.1% of the traffic share compared to the next 140 biggest publishers.

And the study, conducted by the digital market intelligence company, SimilarWeb, found that the BBC dominated digital news last year by generating a 30% market share.

The corporation’s two sites, bbc.co.uk and bbc.com, secured 18.9bn page views, more than three times the traffic of its nearest competitor, msn.com, with 5.6bn.

In third place was DMG Media, whose sites include Mail Online, generated a 6.6% market share (4.1bn page views). Fourth was Trinity Mirror, which has 31 news sites, and in fifth place was theguardian.com.

https://www.theguardian.com/media/greenslade/2016/feb/09/bbc-websites-dominate-the-market-in-online-news-views

Corpsey
04-11-2016, 01:58 PM
In any case, what about the need successive Prime Ministers have felt to pander to Murdoch? They must have considerable influence for politicians to be so eager to suck up to them, no?

Whereas they constantly beat the BBC with a big stick.

droid
04-11-2016, 02:12 PM
Yes, but it's pretty complicated when you take online figures into account. I mean, what articles are they actually reading? What other sites do they visit?

Here are some online figures that suggest that the BBC is far and away the most influential online news source (with five times the viewing figures of DMG Media, the Daily Mail's parent group).



https://www.theguardian.com/media/greenslade/2016/feb/09/bbc-websites-dominate-the-market-in-online-news-views

Surely you could say the same for print - and also, how big would BBC market share be if you stripped out all of the entertainment? Radio and TV streams etc.

One thing I think is certain, tabloid influence cannot be dismissed based on dwindling print circulation.

vimothy
04-11-2016, 02:27 PM
I think it's less obvious for print because people will flick through a newspaper from start to finish, whereas I expect they just go direct to articles of interest online.

Anyway, if you mean that online market-share makes up for dwindling print circulation, perhaps it does to an extent (if you're the Daily Mail or the Guardian), but it's not a market dominated by the tabloids.

Mr. Tea
04-11-2016, 02:41 PM
You can't compare the BBC with newspapers - print or online editions - because it doesn't deal in big, bold, single-message headlines like the tabloids (and often even the broadsheets) do.

Surely if the Leave campaign earlier this year and Trump's candidacy and then election campaign going on right this second have taught us anything, it's that the most effective message is the loudest and simplest? A semi-nuanced article on the 'magazine' section of the BBC News website about EU migrants working as NHS nurses or whatever is as nothing next to a headline in huge black block capitals about TEN MILLION BULGARIANS LINING UP TO STEAL YOUR JOB AND SHIT IN YOUR FRONT GARDEN or whatever.

UFO over easy
04-11-2016, 02:44 PM
the mail/sun are pure propaganda/incitement, how useful is it to compare their readership with that of the bbc? it's not 'news' in the same way so they don't influence in the same way, so im not sure a comparison of the numbers can do this conversation justice

luka
04-11-2016, 03:37 PM
Lol at you lot. Why are you letting him lead you by the nose?

Leo
04-11-2016, 03:46 PM
some very small circulation publications such as the weekly standard or national review have had substantial impact in the past by pushing out ideology and influencing the political dialogue.

obviously this is slightly different from what you're discussing, since those journals are read by a small number of elites/wonks and not a general consumer audience, but one could argue that aspects of those journals' ideology make their way into general news publications/websites through their influence.

Corpsey
04-11-2016, 03:50 PM
Lol at you lot. Why are you letting him lead you by the nose?

Don't just stand there, help us!

Mr. Tea
04-11-2016, 04:25 PM
Lol at you lot. Why are you letting him lead you by the nose?

You're right of course, but it's Friday afternoon and I dunno about anyone else but I'm bored and am just waiting till it's a seemly time to bust a move from work.

Which is about.... now, I think. Good weekend, everyone.

paolo
04-11-2016, 08:23 PM
Do the tabloids really reflect the popular mood, rather than dictating it, especially in an era where newspapers are either going under or on the verge of it?

We don't know. It's impossible to say to what extent the tabloids are driving things and to what extent they're being driven by popular opinion. People generally like to read stuff that confirms what they already believe

luka
04-11-2016, 08:34 PM
Fux sake

luka
04-11-2016, 09:05 PM
If you've watched game of thrones you know one thing. Power is perception. So that's a starting point. Deny him his premise. That influence is measured in sales figures.

luka
04-11-2016, 09:07 PM
And Corpsey you gestured towards this. Everyone from the prime minister down acts as though rothermere, Dacre, Murdoch are powerful. Turn the question around. Why?

luka
04-11-2016, 09:08 PM
You're trying to prove number of readers is higher than he says it is. Fell into a trap.

luka
04-11-2016, 09:10 PM
Who votes consistently? Who can be shaped and mobilised into a bloc is more important than numeric majorities

luka
04-11-2016, 09:10 PM
15% matters, 5% you can count on matters

luka
04-11-2016, 09:11 PM
Where's the counterweight?

luka
04-11-2016, 09:12 PM
Where's Corbyns voice reaching what? 15,20%

luka
04-11-2016, 09:15 PM
Reality pays no attention to statistics

Leo
04-11-2016, 09:43 PM
just fyi, this isn't twitter: you can actually write more than 140 characters per post. :)

droid
04-11-2016, 09:50 PM
You're trying to prove number of readers is higher than he says it is. Fell into a trap.

Nah, you disprove his basic premise to discredit him, then take the self evidently false assertions apart piece by piece.

Only problem is you have to be arsed.

droid
04-11-2016, 10:50 PM
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CwcZMKZXcAIbXhz.jpg

Mr. Tea
04-11-2016, 11:16 PM
A friend of mine was fulminating about the Gina Miller 'face darkening' thing on FB just now, but has since reversed himself after seeing a clip of her on telly - I mean, if you just do a google image search for her, she does actually have fairly dark skin: https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=gina+miller&espv=2&biw=1420&bih=682&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi3rZehnZDQAhWLD8AKHZToD84Q_AUIBygC

Not that the Sun isn't written and edited by utter scumbags, but if anything, it's the Times that's lightened her up.

droid
04-11-2016, 11:36 PM
lol. Its a tricky one actually. I think the Sun pic is a touch darker, but certainly within the realms of printer error. The times has the contrast and yellows pushed up and the sun has taken out all the high midtones and reduced the contrast.

firefinga
05-11-2016, 07:45 AM
I am not from the UK/Ireland as most of dissensus' readers seem to be but in austria we have tabloids too of course. We have two tabloids here that are actually free, financed all via advertising, and extremely successfull. People get them nearby bus stations, railway stations, outside supermarkets and so on, and occasionally I travel by train and see people reading those in masses. Do you have them, too?

Needless to say, those free ones are even more about spectacle, sensationalism and aiming at the emotional in an even cruder fashion than the established tabloids (which still cost money)

luka
14-11-2016, 06:26 PM
I am not from the UK/Ireland as most of dissensus' readers seem to be but in austria we have tabloids too of course. We have two tabloids here that are actually free, financed all via advertising, and extremely successfull. People get them nearby bus stations, railway stations, outside supermarkets and so on, and occasionally I travel by train and see people reading those in masses. Do you have them, too?

Needless to say, those free ones are even more about spectacle, sensationalism and aiming at the emotional in an even cruder fashion than the established tabloids (which still cost money)

We have one but it's less extreme than the sun. Mostly celeb gossip.

Corpsey
14-11-2016, 08:46 PM
The Metro, owned by The Daily Mail I believe? Definitely a rag but as Luka says less political.

Evening Standard might also be run by the Mail. More political, right wing.