The Daily Mail received some very bad news on Thursday 30 November. So if you have a few spare nanoseconds, please spare a thought for the right-wing tabloid, as it’s currently going through a very distressing period.
The Daily Mail‘s parent company, Daily Mail & General Trust (DMGT), which also owns The Mail on Sunday and Metro, released its full year accounts. And they showed that the company recorded a “statutory loss” before tax of £112m. This, in turn, caused DMGT shares to plunge by around 23% to a five-year low:
DMGT said its profit before tax was down 13% to £226m and revenues also dropped by 13%, to £1.66bn. In 2016, though, DMGT posted a £202m profit. As The Independent reported, the company put some of its poor performance down to falling advertising revenues – print advertising revenue fell by 5%, although this was offset somewhat by digital advertising revenue increasing by 18%.
But to many, the loss of print advertising revenue will come as little surprise.
The group Stop Funding Hate has launched a relentless campaign highlighting companies that advertise in The Daily Mail. And it has yielded results: both Lego and The Body Shop ended advertising deals with the paper, and Paperchase pulled out of a promotional one.
But The Daily Mail‘s problems run deeper than just advertising. It has come under increasing scrutiny for what many consider to be its inflammatory, intolerant, and often racist and xenophobic editorial line. Front pages have included:
And many see it as having an obsession with immigration, possibly for good reason:
Just recently, Mail Online ended its contract with Katie Hopkins after two years. Her time at the media outlet was marred by controversy, not least when it had to pay £150,000 in damages to a British Muslim family. Hopkins falsely accused them of extremism.
The Daily Mail: “beautiful propaganda”
There will probably be many people who won’t be shedding a tear for The Daily Mail over its woes. Not least LBC host James O’Brien. On 28 November, he rather fittingly paid tribute to The Daily Mail, and his words may echo many people’s thoughts:
The Daily Mail persuades people who have been shafted by the rich and shafted by the owning classes, on a daily basis, that somehow they are on the side of the owning classes…
The reason why their lives aren’t going as swimmingly as the people that edit and own those newspapers is foreigners, and immigration…
It’s a beautiful piece of propaganda. One of the finest pulled off in peacetime, [and] I would argue, in history.
Amen to that.
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Featured image via Kerry-Anne Mendoza
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