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'The lies of a newspaper in London can get a bloke's head caved-in down an alley in Bradford.'
March 4, 2011 2:55 PM   Subscribe

Richard Peppiatt, a reporter for the British tabloid the Daily Star, has quit because of its "hatemongering" anti-Muslim propaganda. This is his resignation letter.
posted by fearfulsymmetry (36 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
Is there any UK newspaper whose name starts with Daily that isn't full of shit?
posted by kmz at 3:03 PM on March 4, 2011 [3 favorites]


Calling the Daily Star a newspaper is giving it a lot more credit than it deserves.
posted by afx237vi at 3:10 PM on March 4, 2011 [2 favorites]


Good on him.

On the other hand: working there in the first place.
posted by Artw at 3:17 PM on March 4, 2011 [8 favorites]


Well, on the evidence of his resignation letter he's no great loss to British journalism. On the other hand, it's instructive for people to see just exactly how the shit gets shovelled at the Daily Star.
posted by Prince Lazy I at 3:21 PM on March 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


On the other hand: working there in the first place.

Exactly. What is he saying that anyone with a pair of eyes and a pair of braincells doesn't already know? The Daily Star fabricates sensationalist news stories and panders to the British far right? No shit... really? The racist boneheads who read that rag on a daily basis are going to be devastated that he quit, I'm sure.
posted by afx237vi at 3:22 PM on March 4, 2011


It's freakishly strange to read anything associated with a British tabloid that has more than two sentences per paragraph.
posted by ArmyOfKittens at 3:23 PM on March 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


inciteful over insightful - nice.
posted by HLD at 3:26 PM on March 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Every time I read British tabloids, there's always codewords surrounding the story telling you what you're supposed to think about something- 'Single mother', 'Asylum seeker', 'Council estate', 'Taxpayer-funded', that sort of thing. It's downright evil.
Katharina Blum, anyone?
posted by dunkadunc at 3:28 PM on March 4, 2011


Ah, I thought so... Daily Star are also the shitheads that published a completely made up story about Grand Theft Auto, trying to claim Rockstar was going to release a GTA based on Raoul Moat. They even dragged one of the victims' relatives into it. Utterly sickening.
posted by kmz at 3:28 PM on March 4, 2011 [2 favorites]


Never mind me- the Daily Mail is the one that uses code words. The Daily Star doesn't even give a shit, they just say it outright.
posted by dunkadunc at 3:33 PM on March 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Well, on the evidence of his resignation letter he's no great loss to British journalism.

Agreed, this is probably the most tortured resignation letter I've read, These things should be punchy stick-it-to-the big-man things. This reads like a badly constructed high school essay.
posted by the noob at 3:35 PM on March 4, 2011 [2 favorites]


And- what's Murdoch doing not owning this?
posted by the noob at 3:37 PM on March 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Astonishing, isn't it?
posted by Artw at 3:43 PM on March 4, 2011


Love this bit:

A great swathe of your readership lives in the north of England, yet you employ just one staff reporter outside London. One. I guess it makes the same sense to you up there in your ivory tower as it does to me down here on my high horse. I get it, I do.
posted by Celsius1414 at 3:55 PM on March 4, 2011


HACK CAN'T HACK IT

Jilted reporter says it's all bosses fault.

In an astonising outburst of rage, novice reporter Richard Peppiatt publically QUIT his job at the Daily Star by EMAIL while slinging dirt at top boss, Richard Desmond.

Peppiatt, 24, from Teeside, had BRAGGED openly to mates about how he scammed the Star with FAKE stories to earn extra MOOLAH. In one SICKENING incident the young writer LIED about Muslim-only loos at a shopping centre in Bradford.

"Undeterred by the nuisance of truth, we omitted a few facts", the sneaky scribe GLOATED, adding that he then "hired Osama Bin Laden to stand by".

...etc ... etc...
posted by rh at 4:02 PM on March 4, 2011 [13 favorites]


And- what's Murdoch doing not owning this?

Then this hack just made a very public audition for a job at any Murdoch property, where they'll be able to point at him and say "we're better than the Daily Star".
posted by oneswellfoop at 4:05 PM on March 4, 2011


The EDL love-in's apparently been interesting to watch (to stretch that concept a bit) friends who can be arsed to follow this stuff have said, because it seems the Sunday edition editor's having none of it so after puff pieces all week you get negative coverage then.
posted by Abiezer at 4:15 PM on March 4, 2011


Whenever I read a good resignation letter, I think of this.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 4:19 PM on March 4, 2011 [4 favorites]


I like this for the following sentence:

I suspect you see a perfect circle. I see a downward spiral. I see a cascade of shit pirouetting from your penthouse office, caking each layer of management, splattering all in between.

posted by lalochezia at 4:25 PM on March 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Neither can I erase that as a young hack keen to prove his worth I threw myself into working at the Daily Star with gusto. On order I dressed up as a John Lennon, a vampire, a Mexican, Noel Gallagher, Saint George (twice), Santa Claus, Aleksandr the Meerkat, the Stig, and a transvestite Alex Reid.

I've been spraytanned, waxed, and in a kilt clutching roses trawled a Glasgow council estate trying to propose to Susan Boyle (I did. She said no).

When I was ordered to wear a burkha in public for the day, I asked: "Just a head scarf or full veil?" Even after being ambushed by anti-terror cops when panicked Londoners reported "a bloke pretending to be a Muslim woman", I didn't complain. Mercifully, I'd discovered some backbone by the time I was told to find some burkha-clad shoppers (spot the trend?) to pose with for a picture – dressed in just a pair of skintight M&S underpants.
So, does "reporter" have an entirely different meaning in the UK, then?
posted by dersins at 4:27 PM on March 4, 2011 [4 favorites]


A glorious heel face turn.
posted by sarastro at 4:34 PM on March 4, 2011


For those outside the UK, nobody takes the star seriously. It's a step above the sport, which once claimed a WWII bomber had been found on the moon. For those in the US, the sport is just below the National Enquirer, the star just above it, but only just. No one, and I mean no one takes it seriously.

The Daily Mail, on the other hand, is a hateful right wing rag that stirs up racist discontent and tells outright lies (shocking example blogged about here), and sadly quite a lot of people take that paper seriously.

So forget about Richard Peppiat, but watch out for the Mail. That's where the real evil lies.
posted by ciderwoman at 4:37 PM on March 4, 2011 [6 favorites]


Ooops, for some reason my link to the blog about the Mail and their terrible lies didn't work, so I'll try again. It's well worth the read.
posted by ciderwoman at 4:39 PM on March 4, 2011


Boy, that was some really terrible writing.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:50 PM on March 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


On the other hand: working there in the first place.

I know, man, but you can't go hard on every Wal-mart employee that quits in the middle of their shift and decides to never step in one again. You just gotta pat 'em on the back and say "You have now arrived".
posted by hal_c_on at 5:55 PM on March 4, 2011 [2 favorites]


This strikes me as an attempt to take the high road in an incredibly conceited way, especially given the status of the "newspaper" in question.

If I'm reading all of this correctly, the man was willing to sacrifice journalism in the name of personal dignity and truth (nothing entirely new there) and morals and what seems like anything else but he chose this as his stopping point. He chose something admittedly important but comparatively less-so as his reason to crawl out from underneath another man's pedestal, climb up on a horse and tilt in his saddle at windmills (please pardon the horrible mixing of metaphors). Seems rather arbitrary considering this man's tenure at this paper/tabloid.
posted by neewom at 5:56 PM on March 4, 2011


Newspapers are basically a delivery system for advertising. The 6-page full-color catalog the local supermarket crams into my letterbox every week in defiance of the "No Junk Mail" sign RIGHT BELOW THE SLOT is superior in every way. It is 1) free 2) a marvel of information design 3) thoroughly researched 4) completely factual and truthful as a result 5) suffers no pretensions to being unbiased, objective, or fair in its selection of articles, and 6) contains information that sometimes even I find useful.

Good stories show up in modern newspapers only by accident, never by design.
posted by Ritchie at 5:59 PM on March 4, 2011 [2 favorites]


Newspapers are basically a delivery system for advertising.
posted by docgonzo at 6:12 PM on March 4, 2011 [3 favorites]


He broke kayfabe!
posted by Wrinkled Stumpskin at 12:01 AM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Boy, that was some really terrible writing.

Heh. I was thinking, this guy really, really needs an editor.
posted by three blind mice at 12:16 AM on March 5, 2011


For those outside the UK, nobody takes the star seriously. It's a step above the sport, which once claimed a WWII bomber had been found on the moon. For those in the US, the sport is just below the National Enquirer, the star just above it, but only just. No one, and I mean no one takes it seriously.

In January 2011 the Star sold 734,311 copies, making it Britain's fourth largest selling daily paper (after the Sun, the Mail and the Mirror). The National Readership Survey estimates that the Star is read by 1,571,000 people a day.

As Roy Greenslade wrote in the Guardian a few weeks ago: 'Too many of the metropolitan and political elite lift their noses at the Express and its raucous red-top sister, the Daily Star. But they cannot be ignored. The Express brand may be tarnished, but it would be foolish to walk on by. It feeds the prejudices of a significant minority and must be exposed when it runs distorted stories of questionable factual accuracy.'

Charlie Brooker has more on the Star's vile anti-Muslim propaganda: 'There they are, those headlines, the steady drip-drip-drip: MUSLIM-ONLY LOOS and BBC PUTS MUSLIMS BEFORE YOU and MUSLIM SICKOS' MADDIE KIDNAP SHOCK (No, I haven't made that one up). Drip drip drip. Bullshit or exaggeration masquerading as fact. And to what aim?'
posted by verstegan at 1:17 AM on March 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Ciderwoman : Ooops, for some reason my link to the blog about the Mail and their terrible lies didn't work, so I'll try again. It's well worth the read.

When we have threads about some arsehole policeman abusing their powers someone usually links to instructions on "how to talk to the Police".

Perhaps we need the same for journalists.
posted by fullerine at 1:28 AM on March 5, 2011


While we're on the subject of piss-poor journalism, the Guardian's story on the resignation does nothing other than quote or paraphrase the resignation letter and response from the Daily Star. Lazy.
posted by essexjan at 10:21 AM on March 5, 2011


In January 2011 the Star sold 734,311 copies, making it Britain's fourth largest selling daily paper (after the Sun, the Mail and the Mirror). The National Readership Survey estimates that the Star is read by 1,571,000 people a day.

Not just this, but many people who have literacy problems or who are learning English will choose the Star and the Sun because their language level is so low. The Beano has a higher reading age than The Star - it is very very simply written. So if you're poorly educated or don't understand much about your new country, who's going to tell you it isn't true?
posted by mippy at 11:10 AM on March 5, 2011


"the Guardian's story on the resignation does nothing other than quote or paraphrase the resignation letter and response from the Daily Star. Lazy."

No. Proper.

What they are doing is stepping away from any opportunity to be accused of inserting their own bias or 'tsk-tsking' into the matter, by cutting to the real heart of the matter.

You have the resignation letter... you have the response to the letter. You have a very brief description of what happened. Anything else they could possibly say would be superfluous punditry and speculation.
posted by markkraft at 4:11 PM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


The US has Fox, we have the Mail, Sun and Star. Soon, now Hunt has sold broadcast media to Murdoch, we'll have Fox too!
posted by Summer at 2:25 AM on March 6, 2011


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