A small group of left-wing campaigners are attempting to limit what newspapers report about immigration, Islam, and transgenderism, successfully “bullying” business into withdrawing ads from publications they don’t agree with.
The Stop Funding Hate (SFH) campaign claims that the Sun, Express, and Daily Mail are “using hate to sell newspapers,” influencing the gullible masses, and links their reports to an alleged rise in “hate crime.”
“History has shown us time and again the dangers of demonising foreigners and minorities,” SFH add, seemingly implying news coverage could lead to fascism and genocide.
Thank you for taking time to share your opinion. We genuinely like to know what customers think about us – even though on this occasion some of your feedback is uncomfortable to hear. We promise to review in detail all customer feedback on this promotion.
— Paperchase (@FromPaperchase) November 18, 2017
Last week the stationery brand Paperchase capitulated and said they were “truly sorry” for advertising in one of the nation’s best read papers, claiming they were “wrong” and “won’t ever do it again.”
Days before, SFH has posted a message on Twitter asking Paperchase if “a Daily Mail promotion is really what customers want to see” after a “torrid few weeks of divisive stories” about transgender issues.
One their website, SFH boasts of numerous other brands who have either pulled ads or signed up to support their “ethical” boycott of right-wing papers, including Lego, Specsavers, Plusnet, and the Body Shop.
SFH is apparently led by two far-left former charity workers who reportedly support the Marxist Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, and have lobbied for mass immigration. The first, Richard Wilson, was employed by Amnesty International and has given interviews to the outwardly communist Morning Star newspaper.
Appearing on BBC Newsnight, he boasted that he aimed to influence the editorial line of right-wing papers. “The end point for us is a media that does the job we all want it to,” he explained.
Sarah Baxter, the deputy editor of The Sunday Times branded Mr. Wilson “arrogant” and said his campaign was bad for a free society.
“It’s a company being bullied by a small army of Twitter and social media trolls into using activism and a weapon against the free press. It’s a very, very sad day for an independent media,” she blasted.
Was Paperchase right to apologise to its customers for advertising in the Daily Mail? Sunday Times Deputy Editor @SarahbaxterSTM and Richard Wilson of @StopFundingHate discuss pic.twitter.com/slqScHGPhE
— BBC Newsnight (@BBCNewsnight) November 21, 2017
“You and your activists want to decide what people in Britain can read or not,” she told him on Newsnight. “That’s very arrogant and self-appointed and very, very wrong for democracy.”
She said Paperchase had “blundered” into accepting the word of “a few Twitter trolls” that the millions of readers of the Daily Mail on Saturday “are somehow racists, bigots and hate-mongers.”
“It has bowed to the wishes of a small number of people, against what is quite possibly a silent majority,” she, adding: “It’s not right that advertisers call the editorial line of papers.”
Earlier this year Nick Crofts, President of the National Members’ Council of the Co-operative Group, rejected pressure from SFH to stop advertising with right-wing papers.
“Many people buy these papers at the Co-op and some of them will be our members. Advertising in these papers also drives sales which are important to our businesses,” he wrote in a blog post.