Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Have we just witnessed a massive drop in turnout?

The day before and after the 1992 general election proved the power of the tabloid press when the Conservatives turned a 3% deficit in the exit poll into an 8% lead when all the votes were counted (a turn around that most experts put down to the headlines above). However, with the news that News Corp has pulled out of it's bid for the shares in BSkyB that it does not own, I worry if there will be an editorial in the Sun tomorrow (or indeed one of the other papers he owns) saying (to quote Shakespeare) "A plague o' both your houses" and refuse to endorse any party at the next general election.

According to various sources, the Sun, Times and Sunday Times have a readership of approximately 10% of thre UK electorate and I fear that if News Corp do not endorse any party at the next election, then turnout will collapse to below 2001 levels (59%) and questions will no doubt be raised about the validity of elections in the United Kingdom.

Now do not take me the wrong way, I have long been concerned about one person having too much media control (the fiction of 1984 by George Orwell swore me off that long ago) but in this day and age we still need newspapers and print media to allow people to make an educated opinion come election time.


  1. I think only the Sun think it was them 'wot won it' in 1992. Essentially, the polls were systematically wrong throughout the entire campaign and the alleged 11% swing on polling day was nothing of the sort!

    Will Murdoch even own a British newspaper in 2015?

  2. We can only hope that there will be no Murdoch press by the time of the next election. I would prefer the papers to be under the same obligations as broadcasting and for there to be no endorsements at elections at all