This post originally appeared over at Five Chinese Crackers. I’m reproducing it here because the Express is this month’s proud winner!
Yes! It’s here! BE excited, B E excited! It’s…
November’s 5cc tabloid bullshit of the month award.
Start the marching band and tickertape parade!
It’s been quite a tough competition this month. I actually thought I might have found a winner on October 31st, so there was a lot of catching up to do from all the papers in the following weeks. The British tabloid press were well up for it though.
- All the papers monkeying about with hyperbole to transform three stupid men with bits of printed A4 into a placard-waving angry mob (or Muslims in general if you read the Express)
- The Express telling us the Royal Mail had exercised heretofore unknown extra-judicial powers and banned religion
- The Sun telling us video games cause rickets – in kids of around 20 months old
- The Mail becoming outraged over ‘racist smears’ that readers would have been forgiven for confusing with the paper’s own output
- The Mail getting Total Film magazine mixed up with Al-Qaeda
- The Star for every front page headline it’s ever produced, ever
- The PCC itself claiming that readers wouldn’t be misled into thinking an extractor fan had been removed from a cafe because the smell of frying bacon offends Muslims by a story headlined ‘Cafe owner ordered to take down extractor fan ‘because smell of frying bacon offends Muslims”
Plus, it’s not exactly tabloid bullshit, but one of my favourite tabloid moments this month was Nadia Saint pointing out this Daily Mail online poll:
Lovely. Anyway – onto the actual award winner. Fanfare please…
And the winner is Macer Hall at the Express for ‘99% of you say: get us out of Europe‘ (and the surrounding ‘crusade’) for the reasons in the email below:
Dear Mr Hall,
I am proud to announce that your story ‘99% of you say: get us out of Europe‘ is the latest recipient of journalism’s (probably) newest prize.
Your story, and the campaign built around it, has beaten off competition from all the low-rent tabloids to win the second ever 5cc tabloid bullshit of the month award, presented by me (5cc) over at Five Chinese Crackers.
Put on the pointy party hat and get blowing on the curly noisemakers!
Here’s why your story made you the proud owner of a crap drawing of a trophy:
- You sound surprised that 99% of a group made up chiefly of readers of a rabidly anti-EU tabloid that provides a constant drip of stories about things like:
- The EU banning the sale of a dozen eggs (which was rubbish)
- The EU banning the sale of milk jugs (which was rubbish)
- The EU wanting to liquify corpses and pour them down the drain (which was – hey, I’ve spotted a pattern here!)
would want to get out of the EU.
- I mean, they would only have had stories like these and front-page headlines like ‘EU is on another planet’ (which was – you guessed it!), ‘EU hammers our pensions’ and ‘Get Britain Out Of Europe’ to lead them to the desired conclusion.
- The only other clues as to the result would have been:
- 90% and above of Express readers regularly agree with the paper’s editorial line in phone polls
- An identical phone poll back in 2008 showed that 95% wanted to leave the EU
You must have been biting your fingernails, waiting for the results to come in.
- Although the headline is a little ambigious with its use of the word ‘you’, the story itself says:
…99 per cent of people agree we should quit the European Union.
Really? 99% of people? Or 99% of people prepared to call a premium rate phone number in a self-selecting poll carried out by an anti-EU tabloid? A less biased ipsos mori poll earlier in the year showed that only 47% of people wanted to withdraw. But of course, you already know that, since you reported on it yourself.
- You actually said:
As the shockwaves reverberated around Westminster, Brussels and Strasbourg, voters all over the UK backed our crusade to regain Britain’s national independence
That’s classy, that. Shockwaves reverberated! I’m sure they’d only just died down after the results came in from the poll about where bears do their poos.
The stunt – sorry, crusade – is sure to be a game changer. It sets you apart from the other tabloids, which are uniformly pro…oh, hang on! Still, at least now when readers see Express stories you’ve churned from the Telegraph about the EU ruling that all our firstborns should be fed to the reanimated corpse of Hitler, there’ll be a little logo next to them.
Finally, I would like to set all sarcasm aside and thank you for choosing a crusade that aligns you with the least objectionable of our fringe far-right parties. The BNP have already said:
Today the Daily Express has published an article vindicating all that the BNP has ever said about the strain being put upon the infrastructure of Britain by continuing to permit unfettered mass immigration. Thank you, Daily Express – it’s good to see that you have finally caught up with us.
Plus, they’re currently not your friends because they say you’ve stolen their idea about halting foreign aid. Given your paper’s approach to the issues the BNP hold dear, I dread to think what other crusades you could have chosen. [I’d written a funny here about Muslims and work camps, but I deleted it for fear of giving you ideas].
In fact, Hope Not Hate has sent a letter to colleagues at your sister paper, asking them to ‘tone down the shrill’ when reporting about Muslims. It’d be great if you could read it too and bear it in mind when your own paper pretends three people with bits of A4 count as an angry mob or something.
So, congratulations! You’ve won November’s 5cc tabloid bullshit of the month award and the chance to win the 2011 5cc tabloid bullshitter of the year award, which I will present to the winner of most monthly awards between October 2010 and December 2011.
I’ll be posting the text of this email over at Five Chinese Crackers. If you’d like to make an acceptance comment or anything, please reply to this email and I’ll publish it there.
So, there it is then. That’s November’s winner. Check back on the last Saturday of December for next month’s winner. Will it involve Winterval?
If you come across any contenders, feel free to email me at fivechinesecrackers [at] gmail [dot] com, or DM me on twitter at @5ChinCrack and they’ll be mashed into the mix!