Wednesday 22nd June, 2016

Papers Reviewed: The Sun, The Guardian, The Daily Mail, The Times

The SunSun

Topic of article: Politics, EU Referendum, Royal Family

Headline: Give me 3 good reasons to stay in Europe

Authors: Emily Andrews (Royal Correspondent)

Aim of the article: To report on claims that the Queen is a Eurosceptic

Agenda of the article: The Sun is famously very pro-leave in the EU referendum and this article represents one of the last pushes to convince voters that they should vote leave. By using a large picture of the queen along with the quote about Europe they make it seem as if the Queen has directly given support to leaving the EU. By evoking the Queen, a figure looked up to by many in England, the Sun hopes to convince readers that they should vote leave.

Bias of the article: The article is highly biased towards their anti-EU support and there is little mention of the arguments given by the remain camp. The quoted given from the Queen is said to have been reported by one man, her biographer, and this does make referencing and validity of the quote somewhat difficult, especially as it follows this with an opinion from the same biographer that she is ‘definitely Eurosceptic’, lacking any direct evidence from the Queen.

The GuardianGuardian

Topic of article: Politics, EU Referendum, Economics

Headline: PM says Brexit camp ‘stoking intolerance’

Authors: Anushka Asthana (Political Editor), Heather Stewart (Economics Editor)

Aim of the article: To report on the final day of campaigning for the Remain and Leave campaigns in the UK and specifically the Prime Minister’s warnings about voting Leave

Agenda of the article: The Guardian is very pro-Remain and even before you read this story in which the Prime Minister, a man some people would have voted for and believed in, make the case for remaining you are confronted with a large picture of David Beckham saying that he too supports remaining in the EU. In many ways this highlights the fact that both campaigns have often used famous names and their support as reasons for voting one way or another. As if the fact that David Beckham or The Queen support one side of the argument or another makes either one more viable, and the argument has felt somewhat like a popularity contest rather than a discussion of the logistical pros and cons of Remain or Leave. But then that’s boring for the public isn’t it? This article is making the case for remain and allowing David Cameron to defend himself and address some of the comments made against him over the past few days. It hopes to convince those who are as yet undecided to vote for Remain on Thursday.

Bias of the article: The article’s subject matter is specifically an interview with David Cameron, making the focus and bias of the article primarily one-sided. There are some specific statistics given out that may be verifiable but these are not referenced. There is a small mention about a pre-leave stance but the primary aim of the article is an analysis of the pro-remain campaign.

The Daily MailDaily Mail

Topic of article: Popular Culture, Crime

Headline: BBC’s hollow apology to Cliff

Author(s): Sam Greenhill (Chief Reporter)

Aim of the article: To report the BBC’s recent apology to Cliff Richard regarding their handling of sex-abuse claims aimed at him

Agenda of the article: The article is obviously disgusted at the treatment of Cliff Richard by the BBC during its reporting of the singer’s alleged sex scandal. It uses the word ‘hollow’ in the title, and highlights the continued defence mounted by the BBC of its handling of parts of the case in the attempt to make readers immediately angry against the BBC. Hollow itself is a very evocative word, bringing up the image of a disingenuous and crafty corporation that doesn’t respect people’s rights. The mention that this article is written from an exclusive interview makes readers feel that the news they get from the paper is one of a kind and engenders closer identification with the paper. The reader is meant to feel aggrieved for Cliff Richard and angry at the hubris of the BBC to only apologise for part of their crimes.

Bias of the article: The article is heavily in favour of Cliff Richard, or rather perhaps in favour of a stance against the BBC. Not that the BBC did no wrong, but rather it seems an odd time to not run a front page story about the EU. They do not mention any BBC quotes other than that which apologises, meaning the BBC is not able to argue their side. They do feature quotes from an interview with Cliff Richard and he is able to discuss his case against the BBC.

The TimesTimes

Topic of article: Politics, EU Referendum, Economics

Headline: FTSE chiefs join forces in huge vote for Remain

Authors: Francis Elliot (Political Editor), Robin Pagnamenta (Energy Editor)

Aim of the article: To report on the letter to the Times written by numerous businesses which outlines reasons for Britain to remain in the EU

Agenda of the article: The letter mentioned in the article was written specifically to the Times and this article is heavily in favour of the remain campaign. As the vote nears it seems that the papers are promoting their viewpoint on the referendum more and more heavily, and this article is no exception. The reasons laid out by the letter are quoted in the paper as direct responses to some of the arguments put forward by the leave campaign, including the notion that we would be able to successfully negotiate new and better trade deals with the EU and that small businesses would benefit. This is meant as advice to those who go to vote on Thursday and the tone of the advice is very personal – ‘fewer jobs’ and ‘small businesses… particularly vulnerable to the economic shock’ with the hope that this will convince voters. The article highlights the large businesses which are in favour of remain as it hopes to make people vote with those who seem to have the most support, a tactic which has actually been shown to work.

Bias of the article: The article is heavily pro-remain and its features on the leave campaign are very one sided, with the mention of Boris Johnson accompanied with a question of his integrity and Michael Gove’s comment about Nazi propaganda being highlighted. There is little mention of businesses that support the leave campaign.

Front page images from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/blogs/the_papers

Reviewed by: Sam Hewitt

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