Progressive digital campaign made life impossible for advertisers

With the closure of the News of the World sending shockwaves across the media establishment, Political Scrapbook is proud to have played a significant role in making life impossible for those companies that wanted to advertise with Murdoch’s Sunday tabloid.

In concert with Liberal Conspiracy, we were at the forefront of efforts to hit the dead-schoolgirl-hacking newspaper where it hurts: in the pocket. Hitting the phones to dozens of companies, our rolling live blog became the document of reference for the advertiser boycott of the paper. We were repeatedly contacted by corporate communications departments asking us to update our list to reflect their softening lines and U-turns.

This campaign culminated today with a relentless focus on the paper’s biggest spending advertisers, which were besieged by hundrends of complaints using our digital campaign tool which went live at midday. It wasn’t long before we received pleading emails asking us to call off the digital dogs.

Late this afternoon, Brand Republic reported that all advertising had been dropped after the tally of backers was reduced to just four. Thirty minutes later Rupert Murdoch pulled the plug.

But while we’ll enjoy this evening we won’t be losing perspective.

Plans are well underway for News of the World Mk II — with Rebekah Brooks still pulling the strings.

15 Comments

  1. [...] I express no regret in running (with Political Scrapbook, FB groups) a highly successful campaign to persuade advertisers to boycott the Sunday tabloid. We [...]

  2. It is never progressive to cause by direct or indirect action to force any newspaper to close. Especially when those culpable, Rebekah Brooks, have gone unpunished.

  3. PB19 says:

    I regret the loss of a newspaper but in this case it was not so much a newspaper as a spypaper that produced salacious gossip garnered through illegal and contentious practices. The entire executive in place at the time of these occurrences should be sacked and never again allowed to hold responsible positions within our media. There has to be a price paid by those who knew, those who should have known and those who profited from the behaviours.

    Whilst it is right to castigate and punish those responsible for such terrible wrongdoing, we should also acknowledge our guilt as a society. If we bought, read or engaged in any capacity with this so called newspaper then we too bear a burden of guilt for the actions taken to reward and fulfill our prurient fantasy’s.

    We live in age of celebrity and media hype and whilst we do and we pursue these interests through such media as the NOTW or whatever it becomes, we will continue to pay this price. I doubt very much that this incident no matter how widely reported and reviled will reduce the interest in such stories and that will I fear lead us back to the same place. If we want the practice to change, then I say LET CHANGE BEGIN WITH ME

  4. Laurence says:

    @Will: I would echo the sentiments of the NOTW insider quoted by Tom Watson on #c4news earlier: Murdoch has “sacrificed 200 hard working journalists to protect Rebkah Brooks”

  5. @Laurence I have seen that quote. And while that is one of my problems with any rejoicing that the NotW will cease publication I would also make the broader point that closing any newspaper, regardless of its views and alleged crimes, is a reduction in the number of voices in an already far too small market for newspapers. I do not understand how one can claim to support freedom of the press and plurality of voices and then cheer when a newspaper they do not like or agree with closes under a stinking mire of scandal.

    I believe that Ed Miliband in his Newsnight interview clips that have been released made the right response.

  6. Richard says:

    Will, now that depends on how you define freedome of the press. Freedom from the control of government, that we theoretically have, but government free from the control of press barons, that we certainly do not have.

    As for reduction in the number of voices in an already small market, I have to disagree. Britain figures in 14th place out of 141 countries for the number of daily newspapers per 1000 capita.

  7. Peter Nutt says:

    There is a new element in the periodic table:-

    Element : Rebekah Brooks
    Symbol : Rbo
    Atomic mass : Accepted as about 53.6 Kg.
    …Occurrence : Only one instance of this element has been found although CERN funded by the News International hopes to find more by the end of the decade.

    PHYSICAL PROPERTIES
    1. Has a Ginger genome.
    2. Deflects ‘flack’ very well.
    4. Bitter, if incorrectly used. (See Andy Coulson)
    5. Sweet as Honey if given a proper treatment. (See James Murdoch)

    CHEMICAL PROPERTIES
    1. Has great affinity for anything pertaining to the Murdoch dynasty.
    2. Excellent at ducking the issue.
    3. May explode spontaneously without prior warning and for no known reason.

    COMMON USES
    1. Highly effective buffer between society and Rupert Murdoch.
    2. Can be used to great effect in giving bad news to Wapping staff.
    3. Highly effective at dropping Editors of NOTW in the poo.

    TESTS
    1. Ask “ Do you want to have Rupert’s babies?”
    2. Turns green when placed behind a better specimen.

    POTENTIAL HAZARD
    Highly toxic.

    !! WARNING !!
    PROLONGED EXPOSURE TO THIS ELEMENT CAN CAUSE SEVERE FINANCIAL HAEMORRHAGING TO NEWS CORP.

  8. Red Rag says:

    It seems the main stream have finally caught up……I did give you all 24 hours notice…..http://redrag1.blogspot.com/2011/07/red-rag-coulsonyour-time-is-running-out.html

  9. [...] Scrapbook's digital campaign made life impossible for News of the World advertisers | Political… [...]

  10. Malcolm Parker says:

    Sun sub-editors have gone on strike

    http://www.nuj.org.uk/innerPagenuj.html?docid=2153

  11. I am happy to rejoice in the News of the World closing down… It is because I appreciate freedom and democracy that I took joy in seeing our elected representatives represent us, not the murdochracy that has infected our political system. To argue that the small paper market is not representative of a free and open democracy fails to take into account that more people get their news online and will cater their news needs to their interests, all of us on this site are doing that just now.

    I am interested to see how News International will continue in the coming weeks, months and years, whether the public at large will accept this ceremonial slaying and how the activism against News Int will continue, if indeed it does.

  12. Andy H says:

    Don’t worry too much about those about to lose their jobs at the NotW. Unemployed people live in mansions with their rent paid by us, the taxpayer. Plus they get tens of thousands in benefits – I read all about it in the News of the World.

  13. [...] by Rupert Murdoch /**/ /**/ Skip to contentHomeAbout this siteAdvertiseDonateContact us« Progressive digital campaign made life impossible for advertisersThe Times: online ad boycott campaign led to “catastrophic collapse”9:11am Fri July [...]

  14. Sarah Davies says:

    You should see the response I received from Boots yesterday at 12pm:

    Thank you for your email and for taking the time to write to us.

    We appreciate that the allegations made about the News of the World are of interest to some of our customers. As a retailer, we use our advertising to inform our customers about the great offers and products that we have. Media is chosen to carry our advertisements based on their ability to reach as many of our customers as possible.

    We do listen to our customers and will be carefully reviewing and monitoring customers’ views on these allegations before making any decisions.

    What rubbish corporate comms!

  15. scouser says:

    Ha Ha @Andy H, very droll!

    The end of the NoTW is no loss to ‘free speech,’ the Murdoch empire poisons all it touches.

  16. Bill Baker says:

    “we have were at the forefront of efforts”.

    Fries with that cheezburger?

  17. Laurence says:

    @Bill: You cannot haz cheezburger until all cats haz cheezburger!
    http://politicalscrapbook.net/2011/04/all-hail-lenin-cat/

  18. ‎”Don’t worry over-much about the journalists who’ve lost their jobs on the News of the World – I read somewhere that the unemployed live the life of Reilly, thousands of pounds in benefits, free houses, work on the side………”

    – George Galloway MP.

    … and they get free Beamers from Motability when they ‘fake’ a disability :-)

    Black Triangle Anti-Defamation Campaign in Defence of Disability Rights
    http://www.facebook.com/blacktriangle11
    http://www.blacktrianglecampaign.org

  19. [...] concerns the importance of an online campaign in bringing down The News of the World. The campaign, detailed here, is of course one of many important recent political mobilizations associated with the internet, a [...]

  20. [...] the importance of an online campaign in bringing down The News of the World. The campaign, detailed here, is of course one of many important recent political mobilizations associated with the internet, a [...]

  21. [...] the run“. Alongside 38 Degrees, Change.org and Avazz, the feature highlights our role in the viral campaigns against News Of The World and the government’s Workfare schemes.Chief political commentator [...]

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