Monday, 22 January 2018

Guardian should cover tweets more

Print Guardian today page 11 reports on Farage and Banks in possible new project as alternative to UKIP. Not much actually happening, apparently.

But I think there is more going on with social media than appears through print. Westmonster is very active, also Breitbart London. Moggmentum is hard to distinguish. Mogg turns up on Unherd quite often.

Guardian maybe too much on distrust and social media. See blog on ReadG. But they could do some investigation into where Farage is heading and what the themes are.

For example @MayorofLondon not getting much support from Conservatives in standing up to @potus . Check the tweets and retweets for background.

Friday, 12 January 2018

Trump, Brexit, Farage,Umunna, BBC clip

This sound clip compacts several issues that crop up in newspapers. Shows how close Trump and Brexit have become as issues.



Sunday, 7 January 2018

Mail On Sunday Spins Trump Trade Deal

This is the most interesting Brexit story so far this year. The Mail on Sunday has reported an interview with Michael Wolff, author of a Trump book, in which he reportedly claims that Trump will only agree to a UK/USA trade deal if he is invited to the Royal Wedding. Whether or not this is true it is interesting the Mail on Sunday has reported it. They usually make a case against Brexit, in balance for the views the rest of the week. This story raises a doubt about how easy a USA trade deal would be.

The speculation that an invitation is unlikely seems reasonable. Also there is still confusion as to whether Trump plans to come to UK just to open the new embassy. Maybe he changes his mind often, as suggested by the claims in the book.

People reading this outside the UK should check the print source of some of the stories on the website. My guess is that the pro Brexit approach is also kinder to Trump but not sure.



Thursday, 14 December 2017

Daily Mail not quite as convincing as during referendum

Expands on tweets ( @will789gb ) as I have bought recent newspapers. More study later but this bit relates to recent tweets from Anna Soubry.

Telegraph reports Chief Whip threatened to sue for defamation as he strongly denied he had "bullied" a female MP and reduced her to tears. p4.

But Mail editorial asks "Was she truly a victim of bullying? Or were these tears of remorse for threatening wanton treachery?" p14

so there were tears, some might say

But Express and Sun are not into opinion front pages on this topic. Telegraph may regret the earlier front page with a list of the rebels. It seems not to have the impact they managed during the referendum.

Not sure when but there will come a time when the broadcast media do not follow this sort of thing quite as closely as previously.

continues on Twitter.


Saturday, 9 December 2017

@bbcr4today follows newspapers, hard Brexit continues online #blameTheresatheAppeaser

I am trying to stop buying newspapers so much but am also trying to understand BBC reporting. Radio 4 news today starts with fact that Michael Gove has suggested voters can change policy in the next election. Hard to understand why this is news. Then Nick Robinson sets up an interview with a reference to a range of views from Mail to Telegraph. Turns out in his questions that Gove may have meant to say vote for a different Conservative leader. So I have now bought a Telegraph, all much understated than @bbcr4today suggests. Charles Moore apologises for "sounding negative about poor Mrs May's efforts". No mention of betrayal or anything like it.

So a couple of questions that may turn up.

Why is the BBC still following an agenda set by newspapers? ( Nick Robinson not the only proper journalist puzzled as to why social media continues with alternative views )

If there is an election can there be a change of direction towards a single market, even back to whatever the EU would offer? How soon can this happen?

Meanwhile if the transition period turns out to be a bit of a muddle I do not think the Brexit newspapers now have the circulation or energy to work up the crashing out option. This still continues online with Westmonster, Breitbart London, Moggmentum, Leave.EU . Still not known what happened in the referendum with Russian bots, but somehow everything continues anyway. Scale and timing to clarify later.

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Tabloids back off Remoaners, is there tweet danger for May? #blameTheresatheAppeaser

This is a very speculative post, may be out of time and scale, but could connect with something soonish. I am gradually closing down for holidays, need to clear newspapers from living space in case of guests.

I think the tabloids, well mostly Telegraph, have backed off turning the Remoaners into demons. There are now more of them but even though they made a public statement there is almost no negative reporting and not much of a story. One explanation is that the newspapers think the readers will not go along with it as the Brexit enthusiasm is not on same level as during referendum. Also tweets and social media have begun to take over. Westmonster gets funding as Express may be for sale.

But maybe the gap has moved on, not against a fringe of MPs but against Theresa May prepared to get a deal with EU. Not sure what support for a crash exit there is in business but it seems some newspapers are ok about it. The tweet world - Breitbart London, Westmonster, Leave.EU, MoggMentum - has started to raise the possibility of getting rid of May. I have started to retweet some of these with the tag - #blameTheresatheAppeaser.

Some of this is now in the newspapers. Today Telegraph page one "support from Eurosceptic Tory MPs...ebbing away" , ..."leadership candidates including Boris Johnson, Michael Gove and David Davisare said to be in a state of readiness in case of a coup, though none is prepared to wield the knife" Quentin Letts in Daily Mail reports on Prime Ministers' questions - May "greeted with cheers from Government sycophants" but "regarded with suspicion by Conservative Brexiteers." Tom Newton Dunn in Sun (p2) "David Davis allies have launched a bid to make him PM"...... Sun sources - "Theresa will be gone by Christmas". Iain Martin comment subheadline in Times (p33) time to acknowledge May unsuited to leadership and must be replaced urgently - on Brexit Canada plus arrangements for City and Ireland. New Prime Minister Gove Rudd or -unlikely- #Boris. Too much peril for a general election. key figures to meet and agree.

Fleet Street for Brexit might get behind this sort of thing but more likely as tweets for now ( whether or not picked up by Russian bots ) .

Not sure how this is working out but my guess is Fleet Street as print will be shown as losing influence as in previous occasions.

By the way, Bannon and Breitbart not always concerned with interests of existing party organisation.

RT may still be best source for #Corbyn and PMQs

I am still confused about the idea of Russian bots influencing Brexit voting. Given what is being reported about the USA it seems quite possible. The UK gov is upset about something but they do not inform us what it is. So maybe later the first part of this blog will need to be rewritten to include new info.

Meanwhile I still think RT has done a good job on reporting Corbyn and PM questions in parliament. The newspaper story since Corbyn was elected leader of the opposition has been that he fails most of the time. On YouTube you can see actual recordings in his own voice. Duringbthe referendum and second leadership election I found RT did the most complete clips, avoiding the edits some others came up with to show an anti Corbyn case. I may be wrong about this but look forward to some proper study.




Steve Richards has suggested ways in which Corbyn and Labour could develop policy on single market. If there is support for this one thing to do would be to reconsider reporting on what Corbyn said during the referendum. The move to blame him ahead of the coup was so definitive that the record is way adrift as my own memory serves. During the general election Laura Kuenssberg for example managed an interview that concentrated too much on immigration and failed to notice what Corbyn was trying to say about economy. Maybe just my take, but it was quite easy for Conservatives to edit into an attack ad.

Maybe RT is just promoting any view that helps instability, but I find the Corbyn coverage useful. The FT needs a change in Brexit policy but Corbyn will need to be persuaded through policy that includes the concerns he has stated.