WINGS OVER Scotland boasted recently to have more readers online than the Daily Record, Scottish Sun, The Scotsman, The Herald or the Scottish Daily Express. He made this astonishing unsubstantiated claim in ‘The National’ newspaper. AhDinnaeKen said “haud oan a minute, surely The National are putting their reputation at risk by publishing such falsehoods.” We hope, after reading our exclusive exposure they’ll correct the glaring error:
By Longshanker aka @ergasiophobe
STUART CAMPBELL of alternative facts website, Wings Over Scotland, was today, yet again, exposed as a cynically manipulative liar
In Friday’s The National newspaper, Campbell claimed that his website had more readers online every month than the Daily Record, Scottish Sun, The Scotsman, The Herald or the Scottish Daily Express.
The claim proved to be an astonishing barefaced lie.
We were taken aback that The National was prepared to appear to support such an easily corroborated false assertion.
In a piece entitled “What do we do about Scotland’s Unionist media in the #ScotRef campaign? We bypass them”, Campbell used a weasel worded sentence to give the impression that his site was part of the National Readership Survey of 2016.
He said: “According to figures recently released by the National Readership Survey for 2016, my own site Wings Over Scotland – has more readers online every month than the Daily Record, Scottish Sun, The Scotsman, The Herald or the Scottish Daily Express, which is an astonishing statistic…”
But it wasn’t an “astonishing statistic”. It was an “astonishing lie” intended to give an “astonishing” false impression of Wings reach and influence.
The National Readership Survey is a sophisticated operation funded by News Media Association (Newspapers), Professional Publishers Association (Magazines) and the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (Advertisers).
The survey is conducted independently by IPSOS Mori and partners. It provides solid market information from which all three subscriber members base commercial strategies for the future.
The survey provides no information on “new media” Scottish political websites.
So quite what Campbell thought he was playing at by making such an amateurish, easily rebutted, claim is the question The National should be asking.
According to Campbell’s figures from May 2016, Wings Over Scotland had “381,977 unique readers”. But these are based on Google Analytics figures where Campbell’s use of the word “readers” is misleading. What he should have stuck to was “unique users” or the even more accurate “unique browsers”.
Contrast and compare with the table below, taken from a Press Gazette report on the National Readership Survey 2016.
As can clearly be seen – the figures provided are in thousands – The Scotsman is read by 412,00 readers online and 729,000 on mobile: The Daily Record does better with 588,000 readers online and 3,650,000 readers on mobile.
Given that Campbell’s claimed figure of 381,977 is the highest he can provide – with the caveat that they’re dubious and mostly meaningless – it’s easy to conclude that the assertion made by him having more readers than the named papers is a lie.
Quite why he would run with such an easily disproved lie in a national/regional newspaper is the question The National should be asking.
AhDinnaeKen readers will no doubt come to their own conclusions.
Meanwhile, fire extinguishers for spontaneously combusting pants are available on EBay for Campbell.