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Wings Over Scotland


The fourth and fifth estates

Posted on August 09, 2013 by

We learned yesterday, in perhaps not the most groundbreaking journalistic scoop of all time, that people don’t much trust politicians. While Scots were much more inclined to believe what they were told by the Yes campaign than the No one, the majority still thought they were being told more fibs than truth by everyone concerned.

networkpoint

What, then, of those whose job it is to scrutinise our politicians, dig down through all the spin and evasion for the facts and tell the public what they need to know?

On our behalf, our good friends at Panelbase impertinently asked 1015 Scots to offer some of their views on the Scottish media. Here’s what they thought. (Once again, the options were presented to respondents in random order.)

———————————————————————————————

Q4. With regard to overall coverage of the independence debate, which of these statements about the media do you agree with? 

Tick as many as apply.

———————————————————————————————

It’s biased against independence: 27%

It’s biased in favour of independence: 8%

It’s not biased either way: 13%

It gives me enough solid, reliable information about independence to make a decision: 6%

It just reports what the two sides say, but doesn’t find out what the truth is: 33%

It gives disproportionately large coverage to negative/scare stories: 29%

It balances negative and positive stories well: 5%

The same pundits appear too often on TV: 22%

A wide range of voices are heard: 6%

It will significantly influence how I vote: 6%

It will NOT significantly influence how I vote: 49%

———————————————————————————————

Well, that’s quite a lot to analyse. Let’s break this down.

It’s biased against independence: 27%
It’s biased in favour of independence: 8%
It’s not biased either way: 13%

Alert readers will have noticed that although those options cover all possibilities, fewer than half of respondents (48%) have selected any of them. This either means that our respondents don’t buy newspapers (something which is of course increasingly true), or buy them but only read the sports pages. So as many as half of our sample having an opinion on their political bias is actually quite encouraging.

If we strip out all the people who didn’t express an opinion, for the purposes of illustration, the results come out like this:

It’s biased against independence: 56%
It’s biased in favour of independence: 17%
It’s not biased either way: 27%

That, of course, means that as well as Yes supporters, a significant number of Unionists must also think that the Scottish press is biased against independence. And indeed, more Labour and Lib Dem voters thought the press was against independence than for it, with Tories split exactly evenly.

(MEMO TO SELVES FOR NEXT POLL: Include question asking Conservative voters which newspapers it is they’re buying, and if it’s expensive to import them from Venus.)

More intriguingly, the percentages who thought the press was neutral overall were identical across SNP, Labour and Tory, at 13% each. (Lib Dem voters were slightly more sceptical, at 10%, but then they’re the neutrality experts.)

It gives me enough solid, reliable information about independence to make a decision: 6%
It just reports what the two sides say, but doesn’t find out what the truth is: 33%

This, however, is a horrendous stat. Even if we multiply it up to exclude people with no opinion, fewer than one in six Scots (15%) think their media does its job of establishing the truth of either side’s claims and counterclaims, with the other 85% seeing it as basically churnalism, dumbly regurgitating whatever it gets fed as press releases. The Herald is the only Scottish newspaper we can think of that’s done ANY actual investigating of political issues in the last year, as opposed to basically gossiping.

It will significantly influence how I vote: 6%
It will NOT significantly influence how I vote: 49%

Held in such low esteem, it’s no surprise that sales are tanking across the board, or that almost nobody is willing to admit that their vote will be influenced by what they read, listen to or watch. The press needs to either take a gamble, spend some money on journalism and up its game at a time that ought to be a once-in-a-lifetime golden opportunity for any political writer, or start clearing its desk now and prepare for death.

The same pundits appear too often on TV: 22%
A wide range of voices are heard: 6%

We should perhaps point out at this juncture that this question isn’t a veiled attempt to get our own ugly mugs on the box. It’s an awfully long way from Bath to Pacific Quay on a Wednesday evening.

But nonetheless, it seems clear that the public is sick of seeing the usual suspects from the same tiny group of the Scottish chattering classes on Newsnight Scotland and Scotland Tonight week after week. We won’t name names, because you all know who we mean. Someone buy the BBC and STV a phone book, or explain to them how the internet works.

Hey, what’s this enormous grey thing with the flappy ears and the long bendy nose?

———————————————————————————————

Q: Which of these Scottish political websites have you heard of?

Tick as many as apply.

———————————————————————————————

ThinkScotland: 19%

Labour For Independence: 10%

The Jimmy Reid Foundation: 10%

Newsnet Scotland: 9%

Wings Over Scotland: 7%

Bella Caledonia: 6%

National Collective: 6%

Labour Hame: 4%

Five Million Questions: 2%

Open Unionism: <1%

None of the above: 68%

———————————————————————————————

Looks like us online sorts still have a bit of a way to go in filling the gap, then. Still, considering the printed press has decades and sometimes centuries of history and most of these sites have been around for 2-3 years at the most and don’t get free advertising on newsagents’ shelves every day, the figures show what’s actually a pretty impressive reach from a standing start.

Our poll was “in the field” during the Labour For Independence furore, which originated on right-wing blog ThinkScotland and was obsessively covered by the print and broadcast media, so the top two places are no surprise. (TS also benefits from being staffed almost exclusively by fairly high-profile “quality” newspaper journalists.)

The Jimmy Reid Foundation, similarly, has enjoyed a large amount of exposure through being the creators of the “Common Weal” project. Newsnet Scotland, ourselves and Bella Caledonia haven’t enjoyed any such coverage – indeed, are fairly studiously ignored – but the figures for each still translate to significant numbers.

(Our 7% tallies reassuringly closely with the Google Analytics figures we tweeted last week noting that we’d reached over 420,000 unique readers since launching Wings Over Scotland right at the end of 2011.)

Our poll identified six pro-independence sites, three Unionist ones and one neutral. We’d have liked to have made it more balanced, but as we’ve noted before, online media on the No side of the debate is a ghost town (perhaps because the mainstream media is already filling the role), and we were scraping the barrel to get the non-interactive Open Unionism in there as it was.

The trend, of course, is firmly upwards for internet sites and downwards for the printed press. It’ll be fascinating to plot the crossover point, and indeed to see whether all of Scotland’s native newspapers even survive to see the referendum. But with almost half of Scots saying they’re not being given enough information, it’s not like there isn’t a market to tap. Or maybe they just need to look a bit harder.

.

*All figures are rounded to the nearest whole number. Figures may not add up to exactly 100%, either due to rounding or the type of question.

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    79 to “The fourth and fifth estates”

    1. FreddieThreepwood says:

      I’ll eat my mashie niblick if this gets reported in the MSM!

    2. Macart says:

      Oh jeez, better and better. 😀
       
      So pretty much as suspected. The Scottish electorate aren’t the ignorant easily led mugs the Westminster parties take us for. Mind you the heads up in the May 2011 elections should have been enough for them. They and their media buds didn’t exactly hold back on the bullshit stakes then either and look at the result.
       
      Time for the next bag of chocolate raisins, here we go (the merlot is for after the sun sinks below the yard arm).

    3. Doug Daniel says:

      Now why have the newspaper polls we’ve had up to now never thought to ask these questions?
       
      Oh…

    4. beachthistle says:

      “The Herald is the only Scottish newspaper we can think of that’s done ANY actual investigating of political issues in the last year.”

      I’d say that applies much more to the Sunday Herald, and hardly at all to the 6 day title. Different editors, and no Gardham’s malign influence, and it shows..

    5. When Newsnicht and the like are showing us the front pages of the papers, they should also show what the headlines are on some of the websites e.g. Cal Merc, Newsnet etc.
      I think it’s just laziness on their part, they have a format, they stick with it and never question if it’s still relevant.
      One day when the printed press finally dies the death we may see Gordon Brewer looking a bit lost at the end of Newsnicht wondering what to do.

    6. DMyers says:

      Interesting!

    7. naebd says:

      It’s going to be so embarrassing for the media when they cover this part of the survey.
       
      Oh…

    8. Robert McDonald says:

      “”That’s irrelevant.”
      “What’s irrelevant?”
      “That enormous grey thing with the flappy ears and the long bendy nose”
      Paraphrasing the Marx Brothers – but seriously folks:
      I wonder if there are similar figures for the Herald or Scotsman to “unique readers” over the last two tears. It might be an eye opener .

    9. Vronsky says:

      I think most people’s internet exposure to the referendum will be through Facebook.  Did any of your questions address that?

    10. Moujick says:

      The think that I can’t quite get is this. Is there no self reflection at all going on at the Scottish Press? OK so the decline of print sales are a world wide phenomenon  but any business that sees it’s sales on a downward spiral should surely be questioing the product that it produces and the extent to which it meets it’s customers needs. The Scotsmen  in particular (Kelly? Wilson? Now McTernan!?) seems to be on a peculirly blinkered suicide mission…it’s like,” lets get to the referendum with a No vote and then who cares if we go tits up it’ll be job done”

    11. Gordoz says:

      No Questions about programmes such as Newsnight Scotland ??

    12. Gordoz says:

      What about a poll regarding ‘editorial strong arming’ it goes on; we know it does

    13. handclapping says:

      I wonder if its worth thinking about buying Johnston Press shares and asking the AGM why their support for the Scotsman is not shewn under “Political Donations”.

    14. Bill says:

      Wings is a cut above the rest which is in itself a problem. Its fine for us die hard political observers but we need a “Daily Record” version. A wings lite – sister web page, tabloid in format for the busy folks who dont normally take notice of politics.

    15. James D says:

      You should take out some big bill board adverts in Glasgow, Edinburgh and the major cities with that extra cash left over from the poll or ask for another donation to help pay for a “get to know you/us” advertising campaign.
      Stick “Wings for Scotland” on the buses – get people onboard!

    16. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “When Newsnicht and the like are showing us the front pages of the papers, they should also show what the headlines are on some of the websites e.g. Cal Merc, Newsnet etc.”

      Funnily enough, for no particular reason I found myself thinking that exact thought last night. Alex Salmond recently said that the TV agenda isn’t biased, but becomes so in practice because it’s dictated by what’s in the papers. But why is that the case? Why ISN’T it “And before we go here’s a look at the headlines online as well as in the papers”? It’s 2013 and newspapers are dying. Catch up, BBC.

    17. Murray McCallum says:

      Great stuff Rev Stu quantifying perception of bias and lack of value added by the media.
       
      Isn’t the 49% who will not be significantly influenced by the media consistent with other findings?  I’m thinking the 18% of respondents who would wish an already independent Scotland to join the Union and the circa 31% fairly solid pro independence voters.  Rather than just being a critique of the media maybe it simply reflects the superior solid Yes vote?

    18. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I’d say that applies much more to the Sunday Herald, and hardly at all to the 6 day title. Different editors, and no Gardham’s malign influence, and it shows..”

      In fairness I think the daily edition broke stuff like most of the Glasgow City Council shenanigans.

    19. Stevie says:

      If ‘the public’ would make an effort to better inform itself then they wouldn’t constantly be in a state of surprise at the antics of politician and they would learn who to trust (if anybody). 

    20. Taranaich says:

      ThinkScotland: 19%
      Labour For Independence: 10%
      The Jimmy Reid Foundation: 10%
      Newsnet Scotland: 9%
      Wings Over Scotland: 7%
      Bella Caledonia: 6%
      National Collective: 6%
      Labour Hame: 4%
      Five Million Questions: 2%
      Open Unionism: <1%
      None of the above: 68%
       
      It’ll be VERY interesting to see the rest of the results knowing that so few of the people seem to be aware of the very existence of the above sites. 18% of those voted wouldn’t join the union, and the vast majority of those people profess that they haven’t even heard of TJRF/BC/NC and of course WOS, let alone TS/OU/LH.  In other words, the majority clearly aren’t being informed by those sites’ punditry – I wonder how different it would be if they were?

    21. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “A wings lite – sister web page, tabloid in format for the busy folks who dont normally take notice of politics.”

      Blimey, we’re too tabloid for most of the indy chatterati as it is.

      I’ve been actively trying to shorten posts for a few months now. It’s one of the reasons I’ve broken the polling data down into 1000-word chunks, because otherwise it’d be a massive epic article even I’d get exhausted by halfway through.

      I also try to produce stuff in super-concise graphic form, like the recent “What They Don’t Tell You” posters, but at the end of the day I’m only one bloke and there are only 24 hours in the day. Wings is already 7 days a week and there simply isn’t a lot of slack for doing more stuff than we do now in.

    22. naebd says:

      I think the 49% ‘wont be influenced’ meshes with human nature – people like to think they aren’t easily led. Whether it’s true or not is a different thing.

    23. Rikki Duncan says:

      What about the AYE magazine which is available through facebook
       

    24. Bobby Mckail says:

      “This, however, is a horrendous stat. Even if we multiply it up to exclude people with no opinion, fewer than one in six Scots (15%) think their media does its job of establishing the truth of either side’s claims and counterclaims”
      Which is job done, as far as better together and BBC are concerned. Their job is to muddy the waters and leave people uninformed as possible. Leaving them to either inform themselves through the internet (which is no bad thing) or vote on the balance of fear versus hope. Lets hope the latter is the winner in that particular battle.

    25. naebd says:

      Yeah, what about the AYE magazine. (goes off and googles it…)

    26. Morag says:

      I think we’re getting our money’s worth from RevStu with some to spare.  Give the guy the occasional break, he deserves it.

    27. naebd says:

      I agree with Morag.

    28. FreddieThreepwood says:

      When I were a lad, the publication that really fired my politics was Radical Scotland magazine. Anybody own the rights to that title? Can it be resuscitated? I’ll never forget the front cover illustrating Tom Nairn’s quote about Scotland being free when the last minister is strangled with the last copy of the Sunday Post. Brilliant.

    29. @Rev Stuart Campbell – I also try to produce stuff in super-concise graphic form, like the recent “What They Don’t Tell You” posters, but at the end of the day I’m only one bloke and there are only 24 hours in the day. Wings is already 7 days a week and there simply isn’t a lot of slack for doing more stuff than we do now in.
       
      Is that you angling for a pay rise, Rev? 😉

      Again, an interesting set of results. Given that, as you point out, the majority of respondrnts have selected none of the options, and also that only one of the online sources gets more than 10% recognition, does this highlight the importance of each of us simply talking to people, if they aren’t getting information from these other sources?

    30. Jimbo says:

      It will significantly influence how I vote: 6%

      It will NOT significantly influence how I vote: 49%
       
      They didn’t learn anything in 2011 after the 2007 result. Back in 2007 they constantly reported that an SNP government would cost every Scot £5000, and Scotland’s financial ‘black hole’ was escalated from £1 billion to many £ billions over a 4 month period in the run up to the election. The electorate still returned an SNP government. Even though our MSM tried their damndest on behalf of the Labour Party, it was hailed abroad as the first ever election won through the internet.
       
      Then we had the same ridiculous nonsense from our MSM in 2011. We all know how well that worked out for them.
       
      As Stu says: … it’s not like there isn’t a market to tap. Some people, it seems, are incapable of seeing what is in front of their eyes.

    31. Do we need hard copy plunked on every bus train and pub ect ala The Metro. One A4 sheet short paragraphs and site address below for full article?
      Crowd sourced 1000 peole print 10 pages on thier own printer and put them out.
      Required PC, printer, stapler.

    32. ianbrotherhood says:

      Brian Taylor’s Roadshow invaded Millport this lunchtime, and subjected the residents to a barrage of thought-provoking questions. To save you having to listen to it, here’s what they got their teeth into: 
       
      Gibraltar (11 mins)
       
      Charity-chief salaries (8 mins)
       
      Maternity Leave/Pay (8 mins)
       
      Rural pharmacies (15 mins)
       
      Lab-grown burgers (10 mins)
       
      And that, as they say, was that. No heckling, referendum-related nonsense, or mention of crowdfunded Panelbase polls. 
       
      Toodleoothenoo!
       

    33. What would it cost to put a flyer in the Metro?
       

    34. tartanfever says:

      Rev, the first question asks for responses to the ‘media’ – which i would understand to be tv and radio as well as newspapers, yet in the first two breakdowns you’ve made you’ve attributed media to mean solely ‘newspapers’.
      Have I got the wrong understanding of the word ‘media’ ?

    35. Jiggsbro says:

      Alex Salmond recently said that the TV agenda isn’t biased, but becomes so in practice because it’s dictated by what’s in the papers. But why is that the case?
       
      The BBC seeks to save money and justify its licence fee. That means spending big money on big ratings shows like The Voice and saving money on the stuff with a smaller audience (like most current affairs broadcasting). So the current affairs stuff gets sourced by the simplest and cheapest route, which is following someone else’s agenda and lifting other people’s stories. And if you have to steal, you’ll want to steal the stuff you can sell on easily, which means the stories that already have the interest of the public…which means the newspapers, because they’re still perceived – rightly or wrongly – as having a wider reach (as a whole) than any independent website.
       
      Given that the BBC have a 24 hour news channel and a 24 hour news website, they really ought to be leading the press rather than following it. But they can’t afford to hire good journalists to lead the news, because they’re spending too much on having a news channel and a website which follow it. It tries to do too much and ends up doing a lot of things poorly. It badly needs to work out what it wants to be good at and to get on with doing it well, but to do that it needs to have the support of government for security of funding.

    36. Ron burgundy says:

      YES Scotland needs to help out with any graphics or further “secretarial” support. It should not be just down to you Stuart.

    37. Murray McCallum says:

      Jiggsbro – “BBC … save money … big ratings shows like The Voice”
       
      Well the BBC really are well and truly down the pan!

    38. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Rev, the first question asks for responses to the ‘media’ – which i would understand to be tv and radio as well as newspapers, yet in the first two breakdowns you’ve made you’ve attributed media to mean solely ‘newspapers’.
      Have I got the wrong understanding of the word ‘media’ ?”

      It meant all media, but some aspects only really apply to print and some only really apply to TV. Trusting readers to work out which is which for themselves 🙂

    39. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Is that you angling for a pay rise, Rev?”

      Only if you know where I can use the money to buy a time machine. Don’t need any more cash, got no time to spend the damn stuff 😀

    40. Doug Daniel says:

      “Don’t need any more cash, got no time to spend the damn stuff”
       
      Sounds like a party at Rev’s place after the referendum. £30,000 worth of booze to celebrate/drown our sorrows.

    41. You mean you don’t drink?
      Call yourself a journalist?

    42. Perfidious Albion says:

      Have you considered buying some front-page advertising space in selected newspapers to direct people to your site?

    43. Murray McCallum says:

      To raise publicity we could crowdfund to pay an MP to raise a question in Parliament.  Best to opt for a pro Union MP who likes to maximise his personal income – I am thinking Alistair Darling.  Question could be to the Home Secretary about secret separitist plans to annex Bath in the event of a Yes vote?  Meedya would surely have to cover.

    44. a supporter says:

      Further to what Ron Burgundy writes. The YES campaign should spend some resources on advertising the on-line media which is available. There could be a lot to gain by doing so. At the moment I think it discounts Independence blogs, like it does the ‘old’ media, preferring to dig deep into the grass roots via person to person canvassing. I’m not even sure it looks much at the YES supporting blogs based on a (wrong) view it had/still has? that Cybernats are the worst offenders for on-line attacks.

    45. handclapping says:

      @Murray McCallum
      LOL Great idea, if that works we could go for crowd funding a peerage 🙂

    46. david says:

      i would happily spend my time putting w.o.s posters around stirling if required

    47. Jiggsbro says:

      Well the BBC really are well and truly down the pan!
       
      Over 7 million watched the final. It’s a good show for them. They could probably get similar numbers for Newsnight if Paxman, Wark etc had to compete to present it, complete with back stories about their dead mums and head-to-head autocue read-offs. “Jeremy, the judges particularly enjoyed your sneers. Kirsty, you managed to say ‘Uranus’ without smirking. But there can only be one Newsnight presenter and the nation has chosen…”
       
      “…Eddie Mair. Well, that’s a shocker, what do you make of it, Vernon? “

    48. David McCann says:

      Perfidious Albion
      Much better I think to combine the resourses of one or two pro indy sites to produce a leaflet, with some thought provoking articles, and a link to the site/s. This could be distributed through the Yes campaign, or local political groups. Its not impossible, and I know for a fact there are good graphic designers on here who would gladly give their services free.
      How about getting together. We could raise the money relatively easily.

    49. Green Bean says:

      Apologies if I’ve missed this piece of info, but Panelbase is showing the following message about publication of its survey for WoS: ‘As our client, Wings Over Scotland, has not yet published all commissioned data we are unable to publish full data tables until 18:00 on 9th August 2013.’ Does this imply a further hitch, or that RevStu needs to take further action before the full data tables appear? I’m getting really impatient to see it in its full glory…….

    50. Angus says:

      I think it would be interesting to (somehow) discover just how many ‘individual’ viewer hits the likes of the scotsman actually gets, not just viewers but ‘individual’ commentators in the commentary sections of what are mainly loaded pro union based articles/labourtorybettertogether press releases all claiming the same old tired baws.
       
      I have tended to ignore the scotsman online in the last six months mainly because I don’t want to waste my genuine punter credentials to reply to what are obvious planted trolls who merely repeat nonsense (ironically based on the spurious dubiously plausible and nonsensical  articles on daily display within the scotsman) and there is an obvious lack of effort made to engage in a public debate.

      These polling results carry a very heavy degree of authenticity regardless of current lack of ‘media’ attention and this will tell when the next major poll is released and is spun beyond credibility as this one will have to be mentioned, at least by the YES campaign.

      But surely it is real news that it was so very easy for this site to engage with enough punters to donate loads of hard earned cash (and then some-the guy running wings having to ask people to stop donating as the required cashflow was becoming going off the grid!)-worthy of an article or two in some newspaper surely, while they still exist at least?

      Am thinking hard on some of the angles of the poll results so far, and this will be going on our facebook profiles as a link of course lads and lasses?

      Facebook is good for debate when it is based on articles like these, mainly because most people aren’t (yet) accessing the blogs that show up our sad news media………wasn’t it Sean Connery who said “Scotland doesn’t deserve the media it gets” and he didn’t mean this as the media being any good at all for Scotland.

      What a tragedy the news media fail to reflect Scottish opinion or inform us, and perhaps the lesson is the ongoing decline in the sales of all news media here.
       
      ‘Mon the blogs…..showing them what real news and journalism actually is.

    51. Patrick Roden says:

      Speaking about the Herald, they are running with the story about the LFI images being doctored by BT.
      Alan Grogan gets a chance to put his side of the story.  
       
      Well Done Herald !

    52. mato21 says:

      Newsnicht did feature the Cal Merc on one or two occasions when it started up that’s how I came to hear of it

    53. Bill Oliphant says:

      Rikki Duncan says:  
      “What about the AYE magazine which is available through facebook”

      Aye Magazine is produced monthly for Yes Cydesdale and lives here: https://www.facebook.com/ayeonline

    54. tartanpigsy says:

      I know of an individual who made 50K A6 cards with links to a range of sites including Wings and NNS.
      YES asked him not to distribute as there were printing inaccuracies in the URL’s.
      YES promised they would reprint with the correct URL’s
      6 months later he is still arguing the case with said heel-dragger at YES.
      and no reprints have appeared. Perhaps a crowdfunded effort could replicate this idea….
       
      BUT the message of this post is DONT expect central YES to do anything remotely radical, that’s our department.
       

    55. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Apologies if I’ve missed this piece of info, but Panelbase is showing the following message about publication of its survey for WoS: ‘As our client, Wings Over Scotland, has not yet published all commissioned data we are unable to publish full data tables until 18:00 on 9th August 2013.’ Does this imply a further hitch, or that RevStu needs to take further action before the full data tables appear? I’m getting really impatient to see it in its full glory…….”

      Not a clue. I’ve told them to make them available at 17:00.

    56. Jeannie says:

      @Rikki Duncan
      @Bill Oliphant
       
      Thanks for that link to Aye magazine.  Just had a look at the polling results interpretation on page 9 of the latest issue – looks very interesting – but as I’m not a statistician I couldn’t comment on it.  Worth a look, though.  The gist of it seems to be that based on past polling results, the trend is towards a Yes vote, but it will take time and Yes should start to lead around February/March 2014, if I’ve got it right.  Scottish Skier????

    57. naebd says:

      Jeannie, I took a look at the graphs – nonsense I’m afraid. There are various polling companies and they all publish results with quite big variations. The jumping up and down of the Yes/No levels therefore isn’t that significant (yet). You can draw a curvy line through these results, but said line will be more or less meaningless.
      S_S may provide a more positive interpretation, he tends to.

    58. Jeannie says:

      @naebd
       
      Thanks for that.  Wasn’t sure whether it was credible or not.  Hope springs eternal 🙂

    59. a supporter says:

      tartanpigsy at 2:28 pm 09/08/13
       
      Your comment then is very interesting. It confirms what I believe and mentioned above. It appears that YES Campaign is reluctant to involve Independence blog sites in the official campaign. And it will be very interesting to see its response to the survey. Anyway, I suggest we do a card/poster/leaflet campaign ourselves.

    60. Seasick Dave says:

      I’m sure that I saw a banner advertising Newsnet Scotland near Inverness Caley’s ground recently.
       
      Maybe an Inversneckian could confirm.

    61. Juteman says:

      It makes sense for the ‘official’ Yes campaign to keep a distance from the independent websites.
      ‘We’ can say things that they can’t. 

    62. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “It makes sense for the ‘official’ Yes campaign to keep a distance from the independent websites.
      ‘We’ can say things that they can’t. “

      Indeed.

    63. Robert Kerr says:

      And we shall
      And do it deliberately.
       
      Hail Alba

    64. Jiggsbro says:

      ‘We’ can say things that they can’t.
       
      We can, but whatever we say will have come from cybernatz, who are all members of the SNP, which is the same thing as the Yes campaign. So it can be ignored unless it’s embarrassing or offensive, in which case it will be headline news and Alex Salmond will be personally responsible for it. </irony>

    65. Red squirrel says:

      I’ve seen a couple of Newsnet banners around Inverness – high impact & I guess low cost.
      Great work on the poll results – well done & thank you. 

    66. Rev, on the point of getting more more publicity for WoS, have you thought of bumper stickers? They are cheap and as you can fit them in an envelope, p&P are minimal.  I was thinking some thing along the lines of “Can you handle the truth? wingsoverscotland .com can”.  I certainly would buy and use one.

    67. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Rev, on the point of getting more more publicity for WoS, have you thought of bumper stickers? They are cheap and as you can fit them in an envelope, p&P are minimal. I was thinking some thing along the lines of “Can you handle the truth? wingsoverscotland .com can”. I certainly would buy and use one.”

      There may already be some of those in the Megastore. I’ll have a look and sort some out if there aren’t.

    68. Re: Bumper Stickers. I’m sure the people that read this site could come up with a better slogan than that mince I came up with!
      A competition?

    69. Juteman says:

      Re bumper stickers.
      I’ve bought myself a new car, but my old car had 2 key scrapes whilst sporting a Yes sticker. I haven’t put a sticker on my new car.

    70. Alex Grant says:

      There is no doubt a whole host of ways to promote the Yes arguments better from bumper stickers to inserts in the Metro etc etc. The Yes campaign need to do more of the basics. Material ‘making the case’ for all the key issues is still not being distributed door to door  and I for one suggested to Yes and the SNP that if everyone planning to vote yes we’re asked to always wear a Yes badge it would make a hell of a difference to people yet to ‘come out of the closet’ and persuade a lot of switherers to declare their support?

    71. Juteman says:

      I simply think that we are not a demonstrative people these days. History has been painful for folk that resist.  It’s in our subconscious that protest can be painful. We can lose our house for standing up to the laird, if not our family.
      Come the quiet of the polling booth, we will take our revenge….

    72. @tartanpigsy, what you wrote about the 50K A6 cards with website URLs is extremely interesting.  After reading this blog post, I wrote one myself suggesting that Yes Scotland ought to distribute wee leaflets with articles from various blogs, but after reading your comment, I’m starting to think it would be better done independently.
       
      How much would it cost to print enough 8-page leaflets to give one to every household in Scotland, I wonder?  Perhaps it would be something that could be crowd-funded?
       
      While I’m not sure what’s the best way forward, I’m certain we need to tell the 68% about blogs like this one.  Most waverers are uninformed, and I’m convinced most of them would vote Yes if they started reading Scottish political blogs.

    73. Linda's back says:

      There was talk of the SNP distributing a nationwide newspaper to two million doors.
      Surely Wings and Newsnet could ensure that their websites get a prominent plug or if not offer to pay for suitable advertising.

    74. Macart says:

      @Thomas Widman
      Not the way to do it and hugely expensive. I’m in the print game and have some experience of just such a quote.
      Targeting is everything as is timing. Don’t print a million when 250k will do. Don’t print when people’s thoughts are elsewhere holidays etc. Don’t print screeds of information on 8 panels when bite size does the job.
      Look rather to inserts in local papers which have ready readerships. Don’t use the dailies make sure its local and personal. Use small print works and spread the work, be popular.

    75. @Macart, thanks for this!  My thinking was that if a wee card comes through my door asking me to browse to a specific URL, I’m extremely unlikely to do so.  On the other hand, if there’s a short article, I might read it, and if I liked it I would be much more likely to go and try out the URL.  I totally get your point about numbers and holidays and such stuff, though.

    76. CameronB says:

      @ Thomas Widmann
      I was also in the printing game, and I have to agree with Macart. Leaflets are essentially one-to-one marketing. With our budget, I imagine we would be better going for billboards, or some such, which will be viewed by many.
       
      What is to stop pro-independence sites hold a joint chip-in, to fund a poster campaign in Glasgow underground, promoting all the site addressees? Bet we could all raise £12k in a month or two.

    77. Macart says:

      @CameronB
       
      Good point.
       
      Essentially Thomas you’re looking for bang for your buck. Small targeted print runs through local press periodically. Billboards as Cameron suggests in targeted locales with lots of walkthrough/drive through traffic. If you don’t have the budget, you have to think geography.

    78. @Macart & @CameronB, thanks a lot for your input!  I’m convinced we need to spread out knowledge of the blogs discussing the independence referendum, but I totally appreciate other people know much more than me about how to achieve that!



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