The Daily Mail Song
March 29, 2010 7:35 AM   Subscribe

posted by ob at 7:44 AM on March 29, 2010

The juxtaposition of capital punishment for paedophiles with schoolgirl pics was hilarious until I realized he made these up.
posted by DU at 7:47 AM on March 29, 2010

Yeah, no redtop is printed on glossy paper. Except when you fake some on your home printer.
posted by ijsbrand at 7:52 AM on March 29, 2010

Yeah - and Monty Python? That wasn't a real dead parrot.
posted by The Ultimate Olympian at 8:01 AM on March 29, 2010

The juxtaposition of capital punishment for paedophiles with schoolgirl pics was hilarious until I realized he made these up.

It's pretty close to reality. The coverage of the notorious Brass Eye Paedogeddon Special, which satirized media hysteria and hypocrisy regarding child abuse, comes pretty close:

The show caused a furore among sections of the British tabloid press. The Daily Star printed an article decrying Morris and the show, apparently unaware of the piece's ironic and hypocritical juxtaposition with a separate article about the then 15-year-old singer Charlotte Church's breasts under the headline "She's a big girl now". Similarly, and also with no hint of irony, the Daily Mail featured pictures of Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, who were 13 and 11 at the time respectively, in their bikinis next to a headline describing Brass Eye as "Unspeakably Sick".
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 8:05 AM on March 29, 2010 [6 favorites]

Paedogeddon is a masterpiece...
"Genetically, paedophiles have more DNA in common with crabs, than they do you and me. There's no real evidence for it, but it is scientific fact".
posted by Damienmce at 9:06 AM on March 29, 2010 [2 favorites]

Yeah, no redtop is printed on glossy paper

True, but The Daily Mail isn't a red top. For all that The Star, the NOTW and the Sun are routinely filled with drivel, lies and hate, I honestly don't think they're as vile as the Mail or the Express.

I left out the Mirror, because it offered decent, campaigning left-wing journalism for, I dunno, forty-odd years, and still doesn't quite stoop so low as its fellow red tops (even though it was founded, like the Daily Mail, by utter fucking scumbag Lord Rothermere, and was vocal in its support for the British Union of Fascists during his ownership). In a similar reversal, the Mirror bought and effectively shut down its competitor the Daily Herald - initially a radical syndicalist/pacifist paper, TUC-owned in the 20s, huge circulation between the Wars - which was then relaunched as... wait for it... The Sun! The history of British tabloids is a strange and murky one.
posted by a little headband I put around my throat at 9:36 AM on March 29, 2010

So strange and murky I may have confused Lords Northcliffe and Rothermere a bit there...
posted by a little headband I put around my throat at 9:45 AM on March 29, 2010

I like the song! And I secretly hope Dan & Dan do a sex vid next, awesome!
posted by Sova at 10:32 AM on March 29, 2010

posted by triggerfinger at 12:10 PM on March 29, 2010

Oh good! A Daily Mail topic! I've actually been waiting to post this on AskMe, but this seems like an opportune place.

I'm American. Can someone British please explain to me how the Daily Mail is perceived by the general public in your country? What is the target readership demographic? Sometimes it seems like it's the U.K. analogue to our trashy supermarket tabloids (like Star, Globe, or Us Weekly). But other times it seems more reputable than those, if still not an example of world-class journalistic integrity. Where does it lie on the spectrum? I get that many headlines are sensational, but is there usually (some semblance of) truth behind them? I doubt it's on the same pure-BS level as Weekly World News, which is essentially a newsprint edition of The Onion. Occasionally well-meaning American media outlets will cite Daily Mail articles, with straight faces, as "true news" from across the pond. Should these articles be wholly disregarded, or taken as biased and overblown, but still basically factual?
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 12:28 PM on March 29, 2010

To quote Yes, Minister "The Daily Mail is read by the wives of the people who run the country" i.e. the wives of the conservative Establishment but their actual readership demographic is far wider than that.

As to your second query I think Daily Mail stories should be taken as being biased and overblown, but still basically factual.
posted by electricinca at 12:54 PM on March 29, 2010

The Daily Mail isn't seen as anywhere quite as sensational as the supermarket tabloids (that would be the Daily Star). It's generally seen as the voice of the unspoken fears of the more narrow-minded rump of Middle England; scare stories about paedophiles, immigrants, and all sorts of things that might cause cancer or reduce property values, and marshalling outrage about people who are Not Like Us getting preferential treatment and criminals being treated too leniently. I imagine it's a bit like FOXNews or right-wing US talk radio, only with a more genteel British understatement and not so much of the religious craziness. (The Mail generally agrees that mainstream religion is a good thing and the source of moral values, but doesn't go beyond that.)

To left-leaning/progressive people (i.e., stereotypically "Guardian readers"), it's the epitome of everything that's wrong with Middle England: narrow-mindedness and xenophobia and gut reactions, the latent fascist instincts of the bourgeoisie. (They'll also point out that the Mail supported the British Union of Fascists in the 1930s and editorialised about how much it liked the cut of that Hitler fellow's jib.) A lot of university-educated people regard it as a bit conservative and stodgy, trading in gut instincts over ideas. Though a lot of people still read it.

Daily Mail articles are generally not made up out of the whole cloth, at least not to the extent that Weekly World News articles are (though they do occasionally fabricate details for the sake of sensationalism, like when they recently accused Facebook of promoting paedophilia). They usually do have a particular angle on them, though.
posted by acb at 12:56 PM on March 29, 2010 [2 favorites]

Oooh, I'll give this a go. The Daily Mail is not like Weekly World News or the Enquirer - which are almost universally regarded as joke papers. It is a normal newspaper that a lot of people read for serious news. I would say the closest comparison is Fox News. People read it and take it seriously and there is another set of people who see it the way you see it described on MeFi. It's sensational, overly concerned with people (and their accompanying stories) such as Princess Di, Madeline McCann etc. It takes a very moralistic tone and as you may have noticed, spends a lot of time wringing its hands over things like cancer, immigration, "Broken Britain" etc. (I'm an American who has lived here for a number of years). I'd say biased and overblown but with a base in reality.
posted by triggerfinger at 12:59 PM on March 29, 2010

on non-preview, acb's description is perfect.
posted by triggerfinger at 1:01 PM on March 29, 2010

Okay, thanks for the clarification. I'm trying to come up with a U.S. analogue to what you've described. Fox News sounds close, like acb said, though that's TV instead of print.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 1:12 PM on March 29, 2010

As a American, actual political biases for each paper aside, I always kind of saw the Daily Mail as a sort of New York Post with less sports/mafia and more celebrities that I can't figure out the nicknames for.
posted by cobaltnine at 1:55 PM on March 29, 2010

LOTS more discussion of The Daily Mail in this Metatalk thread.
posted by Xalf at 2:02 PM on March 29, 2010

Its also bizarrely obsessed with Rihanna.
posted by Damienmce at 2:24 PM on March 29, 2010

If you really want to understand the Daily Mail, I strongly suggest you read Nick Davies' Flat Earth News. An excerpt, which deals with the Daily Mail, is here.

Amongst other things, the Daily Mail routinely contorts the facts to suit its agenda. Perhaps nothing new there in tabloid journalism, but unlike the red tops, the Daily Mail is seen as a bit more quality.

Davies' book also reveals it has the legal budget to rival Russia's defense spending, if I recall correctly.
posted by MuffinMan at 2:48 PM on March 29, 2010

The full version of the Yes Prime Minister quote electricinca (no relation) mentions can be seen here.
posted by Electric Dragon at 3:14 PM on March 29, 2010

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