Why Valleywag is only right 17.3% of the time and why we like it

I’m having a good laugh all the way over here in London thanks to Fake Steve Jobs.

Oh, my. Turns out that Valleywag printed a rumor about Facebook’s founder that turned out not to be true. That isn’t all that different from the average Valleywag post but this one got picked up by a bunch of bloggers who drove it to the top of TechMeme (now the retraction is on the top of TechMeme, which demonstrates that there is a self-correcting function there). My friends and I have been comparing notes about what kinds of things get onto Valleywag and why we all love reading Valleywag (the insiders, at least, normal people have no interest in a Silicon Valley gossip rag).

Now that I’m over in London I get to see the media that Valleywag is patterned after. Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers. That’s what the BBC is for, after all. But every store sells these gossip papers that scream at you with huge type. They go for the most salacious of topics. Just like Valleywag does. After all, if Scoble picks his nose, that’s more interesting than what Oracle announced in a press release this morning, right? Heh.

Anyway, my friends have learned that they can quite easily game Valleywag and get Valleywag to print almost any damn thing. Here’s some rules for gaming Valleywag:

1. You need a somewhat credible source. So, if you want to get something onto Valleywag about me, or about PodTech, you’ve gotta have a former employee, or someone who works inside PodTech. Or, if you’re really good, you figure out how to get a Podtech email address and you send a tip that way. If you’re really good, you send an email from an email address that LOOKS like it might be coming from a PodTech employee. For instance, send them an email from robertscoble@podtech.com. Hint, we’re a “.net” but Valleywag doesn’t really check out news tips, so as long as things look pretty close you’ll probably get your rumor printed.

2. You need a story that’s both salacious and sounds plausible. Zuckerberg selling $40 million in stock fit both. Can you come up with some of your own? Heck, practice on me. “Scoble to go back to work for Microsoft.” “Scoble is a frigtard.” “Fat blogger almost killed in London.” “Scoble enters TechCrunch deadpool.” Etc. Etc.

3. The story must fit Valleywag’s story line. So, don’t bother sending a news article saying something like “Scoble turns out to be nice guy.” That will never get printed, even if you could add a salacious angle to it. Valleywag’s editors have decided I’m evil incarnate, so if you want to get something printed about me you’ve gotta make sure it fits that story line.

4. Send it at a time when it’ll be hard for them to check it out. Notice that that story about Zuckerberg broke on Friday evening. Everyone knows that PR people are harder to find on Friday evening cause they are usually out at the company beer bash or getting ready for a weekend, especially if they had a rough week. Remember: PR people have lives. Bloggers don’t. Take advantage of that. Truth be told Valleywag doesn’t call the subject of their stories anyway, so it really doesn’t matter. But the lie will go further if PR people can’t be reached for comment by other bloggers/journalists who MIGHT actually try to follow up on the rumor.

5. Send the story from multiple sources. Only one really needs to be halfway credible. The others will just ensure that the tip is taken seriously.

6. Take advantage of the fact that many bloggers will reprint the story as fact, even if it comes from Valleywag. This will soon wear off, though, as more and more bloggers realize that Valleywag is playing them. I’ve removed Valleywag from my link blog and didn’t print this item, even though tons of bloggers had printed it because there wasn’t a second source other than Valleywag.

Why do these tactics work? Because Valleywag doesn’t call sources to check facts and Valleywag doesn’t really care about whether something is true or not before printing it. Jason Calacanis wrote recently that he used this fact to get Valleywag to hype up his new company with a series of fake email tips.

So, why do we love this kind of news? The British press sure demonstrates that millions of people like this kind of salacious stuff.

1. We like human misery. Especially if someone more popular than us, or richer than us, is going through the misery.

2. We like talking about other people. “Did you hear that…”

3. There’s nothing like conflict to get our attention antenna up. A good fight gets us all worked up.

4. Sex sells. It’s quite obvious that lots of magazines and newspapers write the headlines before they even have any content. Look at the cover of Cosmopolitan magazine, or a dozen of its competitors. I guarantee that at least one of them has a headline with something like “100 new ways to please your lover.” These kinds of headlines sell magazines and they never seem to change too much. So, in the tech industry, “100 new ways to piss off Mike Arrington” will probably get you more hits than “100 new Office 2.0 apps.” Even if it’s actually better for you to try out some new Office 2.0 apps. Heck, look at Valleywag right now. It’s all about Larry Page’s wedding and has salacious shots of him making out with his new wife.

Why am I writing about this? Cause I’m a sucker for all this. Even as they throw me under the bus again and again, I love it so much I keep reading it. It’s a personal bug of mine and one I’ve tried to work on, but everyone has to have their stupid addictions, right?

OK, enough fun on a Sunday morning from the gossip capital of the world. Back to more mundane things like testing out new RSS readers.

Comments

  1. Heh. “PR people have lives. Bloggers don’t.”

    So those of us who do both must either be PR people without lives or bloggers with? (Confusing!)

    Yes, Valleywag blew it on this story. What’s more annoying is how well their story got distributed as fact, rather than rumor.

  2. Heh. “PR people have lives. Bloggers don’t.”

    So those of us who do both must either be PR people without lives or bloggers with? (Confusing!)

    Yes, Valleywag blew it on this story. What’s more annoying is how well their story got distributed as fact, rather than rumor.

  3. Louis: yeah, many bloggers aren’t willing to do any work. It’s easy to hit “Shift-S” in Google reader and pass along a story or link to it from your blog. That’s why I won’t link to Valleywag articles or use them on my link blog or on my blog until they are 24 hours old and/or I can personally fact check them. One exception to the rule? VentureBeat. They have checked everything that has been printed about me out. So, that increases my ability to believe anything they write.

    As for PR bloggers having lives. Heh! See, you bought into the storyline! We all believe the lie that bloggers don’t have lives so it’s easy to get a story printed and passed along like that.

  4. Louis: yeah, many bloggers aren’t willing to do any work. It’s easy to hit “Shift-S” in Google reader and pass along a story or link to it from your blog. That’s why I won’t link to Valleywag articles or use them on my link blog or on my blog until they are 24 hours old and/or I can personally fact check them. One exception to the rule? VentureBeat. They have checked everything that has been printed about me out. So, that increases my ability to believe anything they write.

    As for PR bloggers having lives. Heh! See, you bought into the storyline! We all believe the lie that bloggers don’t have lives so it’s easy to get a story printed and passed along like that.

  5. There are some subtleties to the British tabloid press that might not be immediately apparent to the casual observer. Don’t be mislead by the headlines – they’re just there to draw people in. The idea of these papers is to attract a mass-readership. Salacious headlines work well for that. Some of the trashiest tabloids, though, employ serious, heavy-weight political journalists; journalists that are incredibly well-networked, right to the top-level of government. The aim, then, is to attract a wide-readership, and use that to: manipulate government; and manipulate public opinion… all to suit the political and social agendas of the newspaper’s owners. It works. There isn’t a politician in the UK that isn’t terrified of upsetting The Sun newspaper, or The News Of The World. Not sure Nick Denton is *quite* that powerful, or if he has the same kind of hidden agenda that some British rags do…

    Also, you might want to check out the Financial Times; it’s one of the top few newspapers in the world. While it’s not perfect, it employs enough journalists to allow stories to be researched reasonably deeply; something that newspapers can’t usually afford to do these days…

  6. There are some subtleties to the British tabloid press that might not be immediately apparent to the casual observer. Don’t be mislead by the headlines – they’re just there to draw people in. The idea of these papers is to attract a mass-readership. Salacious headlines work well for that. Some of the trashiest tabloids, though, employ serious, heavy-weight political journalists; journalists that are incredibly well-networked, right to the top-level of government. The aim, then, is to attract a wide-readership, and use that to: manipulate government; and manipulate public opinion… all to suit the political and social agendas of the newspaper’s owners. It works. There isn’t a politician in the UK that isn’t terrified of upsetting The Sun newspaper, or The News Of The World. Not sure Nick Denton is *quite* that powerful, or if he has the same kind of hidden agenda that some British rags do…

    Also, you might want to check out the Financial Times; it’s one of the top few newspapers in the world. While it’s not perfect, it employs enough journalists to allow stories to be researched reasonably deeply; something that newspapers can’t usually afford to do these days…

  7. You, sir, need to go back to journalism school, maybe actually getting that degree will help. Fundamental misunderstanding of the historical British tabliod press, the news coverage can be deep and fierce, American tabloids are but celebrity gossip hangovers, with most of the Dailies, just doing AP Wire and Local Features. Even the big Gray guns, operate in a analysis-style safe-mode, leaving more of the bigger and more important investigative pieces to the Monthlies. The glory of the American Aurora and the 18th Century acidic bite has long since past.

    And yes, people in glass houses shouldn’t pick their noses.

  8. As previous comments have indicated the UK press corp is “respected?” by politicians, government and to an extent the populous.

    My experience of the papers shoved under my hotel room door in Southern California was that other than the FT, the others content was more suited to being wrapped around a cardboard cylinder!

  9. You, sir, need to go back to journalism school, maybe actually getting that degree will help. Fundamental misunderstanding of the historical British tabliod press, the news coverage can be deep and fierce, American tabloids are but celebrity gossip hangovers, with most of the Dailies, just doing AP Wire and Local Features. Even the big Gray guns, operate in a analysis-style safe-mode, leaving more of the bigger and more important investigative pieces to the Monthlies. The glory of the American Aurora and the 18th Century acidic bite has long since past.

    And yes, people in glass houses shouldn’t pick their noses.

  10. As previous comments have indicated the UK press corp is “respected?” by politicians, government and to an extent the populous.

    My experience of the papers shoved under my hotel room door in Southern California was that other than the FT, the others content was more suited to being wrapped around a cardboard cylinder!

  11. Just to toss in another point. “Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers.” I’m sure that was just a throw away line and you didn’t really mean it, Robert. Because clearly the broadsheets in the UK are every bit as good as the BBC and can stand comparison with quality newspapers from anywhere else in the world.

    But note also that the propaganda is subtle in the UK. And sometimes it takes an ex-pat to point it out or to travel to another country to see it in your own media. (fnord).

  12. Just to toss in another point. “Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers.” I’m sure that was just a throw away line and you didn’t really mean it, Robert. Because clearly the broadsheets in the UK are every bit as good as the BBC and can stand comparison with quality newspapers from anywhere else in the world.

    But note also that the propaganda is subtle in the UK. And sometimes it takes an ex-pat to point it out or to travel to another country to see it in your own media. (fnord).

  13. Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers. That’s what the BBC is for

    Erm … The Times, The Telegraph, The Guardian, The Observer, The Independent, The Beano … and Uncle Tom Cobley and all.

    And these are Nationals, not city-based press like in the States. :)

  14. Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers. That’s what the BBC is for

    Erm … The Times, The Telegraph, The Guardian, The Observer, The Independent, The Beano … and Uncle Tom Cobley and all.

    And these are Nationals, not city-based press like in the States. :)

  15. I was going to point out the serious newspapers but it’s already being done. Simon has a very serious point though about the power of the red tops, they can have a serious impact on political life in the country. When The Sun changes its allegiance then that is news!

  16. I was going to point out the serious newspapers but it’s already being done. Simon has a very serious point though about the power of the red tops, they can have a serious impact on political life in the country. When The Sun changes its allegiance then that is news!

  17. Well, as one of the bloggers who commented on the Zuckerberg story (see below)…

    http://broadstuff.com/archives/586-Cash-out,-new-broom-in,-Miami-beckons…..or-not.html

    …I can say that I hold Valleywag at the same level of reliability as the Financial Times – Heck, being 17.3% right about investment is a great track record ;)

    I just assumed everyone realised that Valleywag was a “here there be smoke” sort of publication. I love flippancy, but I guess one always has to recall that more serious people don’t always see it.

    Seriously though, The Sun et al – though salacious – usually have their hands on a true core story behind the comments……I’m not quite ready to assume that Valleywag are totally off-beam either yet.

  18. Well, as one of the bloggers who commented on the Zuckerberg story (see below)…

    http://broadstuff.com/archives/586-Cash-out,-new-broom-in,-Miami-beckons…..or-not.html

    …I can say that I hold Valleywag at the same level of reliability as the Financial Times – Heck, being 17.3% right about investment is a great track record ;)

    I just assumed everyone realised that Valleywag was a “here there be smoke” sort of publication. I love flippancy, but I guess one always has to recall that more serious people don’t always see it.

    Seriously though, The Sun et al – though salacious – usually have their hands on a true core story behind the comments……I’m not quite ready to assume that Valleywag are totally off-beam either yet.

  19. [...] And Oh, my. Turns out that Valleywag printed a rumor about Facebook’s founder that turned out not to be true. That isn’t all that different from the average Valleywag post but this one got picked up by a bunch of bloggers who drove it to the top of TechMeme (now the retraction is on the top of TechMeme, which demonstrates that there is a self-correcting function there). My friends and I have been comparing notes about what kinds of things get onto Valleywag and why we all love reading Valleywag (the insiders, at least, normal people have no interest in a Silicon Valley gossip rag). Source: Scobleizer [...]

  20. Robert, others have taken you to task on your flippant disparagement of the British press, but I felt the need to chip in too. I don’t agree with the tactics of the tabloid press, but they’re incredibly effective news organs with millions of national readers. Thankfully for those of us who prefer nuance to the shotgun approach, we also have the Guardian and the Independent. I believe Jeff Jarvis recently noted that the Guardian now has a greater online readership in the States than even the New York Times. So maybe it’s you guys who are in need of some serious journalism. ;)

  21. Robert, others have taken you to task on your flippant disparagement of the British press, but I felt the need to chip in too. I don’t agree with the tactics of the tabloid press, but they’re incredibly effective news organs with millions of national readers. Thankfully for those of us who prefer nuance to the shotgun approach, we also have the Guardian and the Independent. I believe Jeff Jarvis recently noted that the Guardian now has a greater online readership in the States than even the New York Times. So maybe it’s you guys who are in need of some serious journalism. ;)

  22. New Valleywag post:

    “Scoble Enters Rehab”

    “Podtech’s Robert Scoble is in London allegedly for a conference, but sources close to the former MSFT employee say he has entered rehab for an apparent social media overdose…”

  23. >>>PR people have lives. Bloggers don’t.

    Hey, I resemble that remark.

    >>>Why am I writing about this? Cause I’m a sucker for all this. Even as they throw me under the bus again and again, I love it so much I keep reading it. It’s a personal bug of mine and one I’ve tried to work on, but everyone has to have their stupid addictions, right?

    You want us to agree with you on that? Hang on…;-)

  24. >>>PR people have lives. Bloggers don’t.

    Hey, I resemble that remark.

    >>>Why am I writing about this? Cause I’m a sucker for all this. Even as they throw me under the bus again and again, I love it so much I keep reading it. It’s a personal bug of mine and one I’ve tried to work on, but everyone has to have their stupid addictions, right?

    You want us to agree with you on that? Hang on…;-)

  25. New Valleywag post:

    “Scoble Enters Rehab”

    “Podtech’s Robert Scoble is in London allegedly for a conference, but sources close to the former MSFT employee say he has entered rehab for an apparent social media overdose…”

  26. “Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers. That’s what the BBC is for, after all.”

    The Daily Telegraph
    Financial Times
    Sunday Times
    The Times
    The Guardian
    The Independent
    Daily Mail (“middle paper” – not tabloid not broadsheet)
    The Scotsman (Scottish paper)

    And those are just the nations…

    And the BBC are mainly biased (they are funded by the government remember) and they keep getting in trouble for fixing TV shows, etc.

  27. “Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers. That’s what the BBC is for, after all.”

    The Daily Telegraph
    Financial Times
    Sunday Times
    The Times
    The Guardian
    The Independent
    Daily Mail (“middle paper” – not tabloid not broadsheet)
    The Scotsman (Scottish paper)

    And those are just the nations…

    And the BBC are mainly biased (they are funded by the government remember) and they keep getting in trouble for fixing TV shows, etc.

  28. Robert, it’s time to stop sucking your own c–k. Really. You speak as though you’re an actual figure newsworthy enough for various news outlets to cover, but as far as I can tell all you do is blog about what ‘other’ people are doing in a very casual, not very well written way (same for the few videos I was able to bear watching). Get over yourself and make your new years resolution about creating something or doing something that would actually make you worth talking about beyond silicon valley circle jerk blogs.

    Oh, and promoting gaming ‘any’ site is pretty low. Just because Valley Wag wallows in the mud doesn’t mean everyone else should. Is that how you roll now?

  29. Robert, it’s time to stop sucking your own c–k. Really. You speak as though you’re an actual figure newsworthy enough for various news outlets to cover, but as far as I can tell all you do is blog about what ‘other’ people are doing in a very casual, not very well written way (same for the few videos I was able to bear watching). Get over yourself and make your new years resolution about creating something or doing something that would actually make you worth talking about beyond silicon valley circle jerk blogs.

    Oh, and promoting gaming ‘any’ site is pretty low. Just because Valley Wag wallows in the mud doesn’t mean everyone else should. Is that how you roll now?

  30. Oh God, it’s embarrassing when provincial Yanks discuss British culture.

    As for that Valleywag guy, I’ve got an email from him in response to a rumour we submitted that would knock your socks off.

  31. Oh God, it’s embarrassing when provincial Yanks discuss British culture.

    As for that Valleywag guy, I’ve got an email from him in response to a rumour we submitted that would knock your socks off.

  32. Scoble, please, stop perpetuating the “Ugly American” stereotype. Your comment about the UK not having “serious newspapers” is the epitome of ignorance. Let’s hope that was a lame attempt at humor. If not, it’s embarrassing.

  33. Scoble, please, stop perpetuating the “Ugly American” stereotype. Your comment about the UK not having “serious newspapers” is the epitome of ignorance. Let’s hope that was a lame attempt at humor. If not, it’s embarrassing.

  34. Kevin: it’s pretty clear that I screwed up here. Sorry.

    But in nearly every street corner or store I only saw these tabloids. Even on the London Star there were stacks of the tabloids, and very few of the more serious papers like the Guardian.

  35. Kevin: it’s pretty clear that I screwed up here. Sorry.

    But in nearly every street corner or store I only saw these tabloids. Even on the London Star there were stacks of the tabloids, and very few of the more serious papers like the Guardian.

  36. “Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers.”

    First things first, please do not take my American views the wrong way. Yes they are stereotypical (which is not a good thing, but I am using them never-the-less to make a point about your totally ridiculous and false statement (quoted above)).

    If Fake Steve Jobs wrote that statement, I would honestly think it funny. But! you are not Fake Steve Jobs, you are supposedly a professional and *serious* journalist.

    Robert, in future please try to refrain from reinforcing the world’s view of Americans as people who have no idea, clue of the *real* outside world.

    I was born, educated, worked and lived in the UK for 35 years.

    For the last 1 1/2 years I have lived in the US (I moved here permanently, reason being I married an American woman).

    Commentors above, have already given you the names of a number of *serious* newspapers, I will not state them again. While in the UK, I suggest you educate yourself a little, buy some of them, then actually read them – you might even end up learning things about the world we live in, not! the world 300 million American’s live in.

    I will leave you with a comment / thought that is true – Mainstream American TV does not produce *serious*, good quality, unbiased news shows.

    Thank god for the BBC, BBC America and the BBC World Service.

  37. “Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers.”

    First things first, please do not take my American views the wrong way. Yes they are stereotypical (which is not a good thing, but I am using them never-the-less to make a point about your totally ridiculous and false statement (quoted above)).

    If Fake Steve Jobs wrote that statement, I would honestly think it funny. But! you are not Fake Steve Jobs, you are supposedly a professional and *serious* journalist.

    Robert, in future please try to refrain from reinforcing the world’s view of Americans as people who have no idea, clue of the *real* outside world.

    I was born, educated, worked and lived in the UK for 35 years.

    For the last 1 1/2 years I have lived in the US (I moved here permanently, reason being I married an American woman).

    Commentors above, have already given you the names of a number of *serious* newspapers, I will not state them again. While in the UK, I suggest you educate yourself a little, buy some of them, then actually read them – you might even end up learning things about the world we live in, not! the world 300 million American’s live in.

    I will leave you with a comment / thought that is true – Mainstream American TV does not produce *serious*, good quality, unbiased news shows.

    Thank god for the BBC, BBC America and the BBC World Service.

  38. Ignore the claims that the BBC is biased because it is funded by the govt. It’s funded BY THE PUBLIC and is independent of the govt.

    Or it was, fully, until it accused the Blair govt of sexing up the case for attacking Iraq. Whereupon there was an almightly row, with the BBC accused of sexing up the case that the govt sexed up the case for war. Subsequently it has been in trouble for sexing up a documentary about THE QUEEN! [shock horror] and for some improprieties with telephone voting. Such is the Orwellian climate of hate and holier than thouness that the BBC has even taking to smacking its own bottom before anyone else

    http://wombatdiet.net/2007/06/19/naughty-bbc-smacks-own-biased-buttocks-deplores-celebrity-culture/

    Yes, the British tabloids are the yellow press with sex added — and as much celebrity news as you can stomach.

    The press in general hates the BBC and would like to kill it. A state of envy and animosity here is healthy. Many feel about the BBC the way American gun nuts do about the NRA, only much more strongly.

    For up to date news on UK politics try http://www.order-order.com. It goes where the press won’t and I have yet to see anything similar in the US, not least in the scurrilous humour.

    Don’t worry about the mistake.

  39. Ignore the claims that the BBC is biased because it is funded by the govt. It’s funded BY THE PUBLIC and is independent of the govt.

    Or it was, fully, until it accused the Blair govt of sexing up the case for attacking Iraq. Whereupon there was an almightly row, with the BBC accused of sexing up the case that the govt sexed up the case for war. Subsequently it has been in trouble for sexing up a documentary about THE QUEEN! [shock horror] and for some improprieties with telephone voting. Such is the Orwellian climate of hate and holier than thouness that the BBC has even taking to smacking its own bottom before anyone else

    http://wombatdiet.net/2007/06/19/naughty-bbc-smacks-own-biased-buttocks-deplores-celebrity-culture/

    Yes, the British tabloids are the yellow press with sex added — and as much celebrity news as you can stomach.

    The press in general hates the BBC and would like to kill it. A state of envy and animosity here is healthy. Many feel about the BBC the way American gun nuts do about the NRA, only much more strongly.

    For up to date news on UK politics try http://www.order-order.com. It goes where the press won’t and I have yet to see anything similar in the US, not least in the scurrilous humour.

    Don’t worry about the mistake.

  40. Sorry Robert, I have to chip in here as well -

    Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers. That’s what the BBC is for, after all.

    I’m really disappointed with you. Your post is about evidence-based journalism yet you feel able to make throwaway comments like that based on extremely superficial investigation!

    Without going over the top, as a Brit I feel mildly insulted.

  41. Sorry Robert, I have to chip in here as well -

    Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers. That’s what the BBC is for, after all.

    I’m really disappointed with you. Your post is about evidence-based journalism yet you feel able to make throwaway comments like that based on extremely superficial investigation!

    Without going over the top, as a Brit I feel mildly insulted.

  42. I have to chip in on this point too:

    “Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers. That’s what the BBC is for, after all.”

    I don’t know whether you’ve ever heard of The Guardian, The Independent, The Daily Telegraph or for that matter The Financial Times. All really serious newspapers.

    Your statement is about as informed as mine would be if I went to the States and all I saw was Fox News and picked up a copy of The Enquirer while I was checking out at Walmart.

  43. I have to chip in on this point too:

    “Over here they don’t have really serious newspapers. That’s what the BBC is for, after all.”

    I don’t know whether you’ve ever heard of The Guardian, The Independent, The Daily Telegraph or for that matter The Financial Times. All really serious newspapers.

    Your statement is about as informed as mine would be if I went to the States and all I saw was Fox News and picked up a copy of The Enquirer while I was checking out at Walmart.

  44. Its a long, time time since I have read such an ill-thought out, ignorant, shoot from the mouth, piece of rubbish.

    There are no serious newspapers in the UK? What about the Guardian, the Times, The Independent, The Telegraph, the Financial Times, never mind the regional press, the Scotsman, the Belfast Telegraph and so on.

    The red-tops are a successful business model? You are an intellectual pygmy and a lazy one at that. The British tabloids are in terminal decline and are losing sales by the hundreds of thousands every year because their business model is not working.

    I am disgusted by a man who sneers and looks down his nose at those who cannot be bothered to check their facts…without checking HIS facts.

    Oh yeah .. I’m Irish. So don’t accuse me of race based bigotry.

  45. Its a long, time time since I have read such an ill-thought out, ignorant, shoot from the mouth, piece of rubbish.

    There are no serious newspapers in the UK? What about the Guardian, the Times, The Independent, The Telegraph, the Financial Times, never mind the regional press, the Scotsman, the Belfast Telegraph and so on.

    The red-tops are a successful business model? You are an intellectual pygmy and a lazy one at that. The British tabloids are in terminal decline and are losing sales by the hundreds of thousands every year because their business model is not working.

    I am disgusted by a man who sneers and looks down his nose at those who cannot be bothered to check their facts…without checking HIS facts.

    Oh yeah .. I’m Irish. So don’t accuse me of race based bigotry.