GB News pranksters fool presenters into reading out cheeky fake names ‘Mike Oxlong’, ‘Hugh Janus’ and ‘Jenny Taylier’ – and even manage to get a bare bottom on screen
- ‘Mike Hunt’, ‘Hugh Janus’, ‘Mike Oxlong’, ‘Tess Tegal’, and ‘Jenny Taylier’ read out
- Presenter Simon McCoy slammed the ‘idiots’ sending in the texts and emails
- He said: ‘We’re a new broadcaster. They’re getting through at the minute but… please? We’ve got other things to worry about’
- Last night a comedian speaking about cancel culture flashed his bottom on air
- GB News has also been hit by a left-wing campaign to deprive it of advertising
GB News’ detractors are waging a new campaign to force presenters to say fake lewd names on air with one comedian even baring his bottom on live TV last night as its critics try to scupper its launch.
The new TV channel has already been targeted by left-wing zealots who want to shut it down by forcing big businesses to pull their adverts with a social media war waged since it began broadcasting on Sunday.
Since its launch over the weekend, a number of GB News presenters including Michelle Dewberry have been tricked into reading out texts and emails from viewers giving names such as ‘Mike Hunt’, ‘Hugh Janus’, ‘Mike Oxlong’, ‘Tess Tegal’, ‘Cleo Torez’ and ‘Jenny Taylier’.
Star GB News presenter Simon McCoy has blasted the ‘idiot’ trolls sending in emails and texts using fake names that sound rude when read aloud and urged them to ‘grow up’.
His co-host Alex Phillips even threatened to stop reading out surnames if the pranksters persisted.
And last night a comedian used an appearance on Dan Wootton’s show to sneakily flash his rear at viewers using a bathroom mirror.
An angry Mr McCoy admitted they were developing systems to ‘filter out’ the rude spam. He spoke out as ‘sinister’ Stop Funding Hate supporters bombarded businesses with tweets demanding they stop advertising with the news channel, which is unashamedly anti-woke and pro-British.
Michelle Dewberry was among a number of GB News presenters conned into reading out a rude name live on air this weekend as the channel is targeted by trolls
Comedian Adam Pacitti appeared on the channel last night and flashed his bottom using the mirror behind him
Viewers were quick to point out the problem but the presenters noticed too late
Stop Funding Hate claims it is ‘not linked to, or aligned to, any political party’ — and claims to ‘have supporters from a wide range of backgrounds and political viewpoints’.
But its campaigns only tend to be against newspapers which endorsed the Tories and now it has its sights on GB News.
Unsurprisingly, in this context, its founder Richard Wilson supported both the Remain campaign and Jeremy Corbyn.
Stop Funding Hate insist its campaign is ‘all about polite and friendly customer engagement’ and, to be fair, the social media messages sent on its behalf to advertisers are usually reasonable in tone.
But many of those who targeting businesses have used the internet on other occasions to troll politicians, journalists, celebrities and other public figures — while also spreading vile slurs about political groups they despise.
Commonly social media users will approach companies and send repeated messages to them saying they will cancel or boycott them unless they distance themselves from media businesses they don’t like.
These are Stop Funding Hate’s four board members:
The group’s founder, writer and NGO worker Richard Wilson, supported both the Remain campaign and Jeremy Corbyn.
He has ‘liked’ or endorsed Facebook groups supporting the ‘Council of Europe’, ‘New Europeans’, ‘Better In than Out’, ‘I’m Voting Remain,’ ‘UKtoStay’, ‘Campaign to Remain’, ‘We are the 48’, ‘Environmentalists for Europe,’ ‘Scientists for EU’ and ‘Jeremy Corbyn for PM’.
He’s also ‘liked’ the misleadingly named Campaign for Press and Broadcasting Freedom, which supports the anti-newspaper lobbyists Hacked Off.
He has run a campaign against the Daily Mail, but has been more than happy to accept money from associating with the Mail in the past. In 2006, when a book he wrote about the murder of his sister in Africa was published, serialisation rights were sold to the Mail for £1,000.
A second senior Stop Funding Hate figure is Rosey Ellum, who, in 2016, came up with the idea of founding the organisation at a dinner party attended by Wilson.
A vegan in her thirties, an NGO worker and a professional cat-sitter, she divides her political allegiances between Labour and the Green Party.
Her Facebook ‘likes’ include ‘Women against UKIP’, ‘The struggling Vegan’. ‘Hackney Greens’, ‘Fat Gay Vegan’, ‘Sassy Socialist Memes’, ‘Womens Equality Party’ ‘John McDonnell’, ‘Tower Hamlets Green Party’ and ‘Jeremy Corbyn for PM’.
On the morning of the 2015 Conservative election victory, Ellum declared on Twitter: ‘So sad and depressed today. For selfish reasons and for people worse off than me. We’ll keep fighting the good fight!’ She’s also campaigned against what she calls Israel’s ‘illegal occupation of Palestine’, using Twitter to share petitions on behalf of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, which counts Corbyn among its patrons.
According to the Stop Funding Hate website, Colin Baines is an Investment Engagement Manager at the Friends Provident Foundation and previously was an Ethics Adviser and Campaigns Manager at the Co-op Bank and Co-op Group.
Alexandra Parsons has worked in the charity and voluntary sectors for 16 years.
She is also an academic specialising in researching cultural responses to the HIV/AIDS crisis, and teaches gender and sexuality studies and literature at University College London.
She currently manages the Public Engagement Fund at Wellcome Trust, and formerly worked for organisations including British Red Cross and Child Poverty Action Group.
During his show yesterday McCoy said: ‘I’m just going to say something because if you’ve seen the papers, if you’ve seen Twitter, some people think it’s really funny to send in texts and messages on the basis that if we read them out we’ve been had’.
Looking at his computer when another rude name arrived in the studio he said: ‘So, to the person that’s just messaged in… grow up.
‘We’re a new company, we’re a new broadcaster, there are systems that we’re putting in place that would stop idiots like you getting through. They’re getting through at the minute but… please? We’ve got other things to worry about’.
And it got worse last night when someone flashed their bottom on air.
Comedian Adam Pacitti was speaking to presenter Dan Wootton and guest Laurence Fox, who were discussing cancel culture after Jennifer Saunders said she believed that Absolutely Fabulous would not be made today.
Speaking via video chat Pacitti said: “Hello. I am a great fan of your work and also a great fan of comedy. I am a man that loves to laugh. I am of the belief that either one can joke about everything or nothing at all because somebody will always be offended by a joke. “What are your thoughts on that?”
As he waited for a response he moved his phone slightly to show that his reflection in a mirror, which revealed he was flashing his bare bottom.
As viewers spotted the joke, they tweeted that GB News was the ‘butt of the joke’.
Vodafone today U-turned on its boycott of GB News with an overzealous social media executive blamed for bowing to online harassment from left-wing pressure groups as the channel’s boss Andrew Neil threatened to ban big businesses who pulled their adverts this week but try to return as ratings soar.
The mobile phone giant and other corporations were targeted by Stop Funding Hate supporters who are plotting to bring down the nascent channel that promises to be anti-woke, pro-British and cover more stories from outside London.
IKEA, Nivea, Kopparberg, Grolsch, the Open University, Octopus Energy, Ovo Energy and insurer LV have pulled their adverts from Andrew Neil’s new channel since it launched on Sunday.
Last night anti-GB News protesters hailed ‘good news’ after Vodafone’s official account tweeted that ‘advertising [with GB News] has been placed without our permission’, adding the business would be ‘addressing this’.
But a company source has told Guido Fawkes that they have ‘no intention of boycotting’ and a social media person had made a decision ‘way above their station’, pointing out that GB News is regulated by broadcasting watchdog Ofcom.
A Vodafone spokesman told MailOnline they are not boycotting GB News, adding: ‘Political views in the UK are, and have always been, varied. And we have always placed our advertising in a broad spread of media that covers the political spectrum. That won’t change. We firmly believe in free speech, while also standing firmly against hateful and harmful content’.
Last year a social media intern at the Co-op declared the business would no longer be advertising with Mr Neil’s Spectator magazine, which turned out not to be true.
Today the Co-op decided to fight back against left-wing calls for companies to suspend advertising on GB News, saying the would advertise where they like and defended the ‘editorial independence’ of the media.
And last night Andrew Neil was involved in a Twitter row with Octopus Energy’s boss Greg Jackson, who pulled its adverts this week saying it did not advertise on platforms ‘whose primary purpose is the distribution of hate’. In an extraordinary exchange Mr Neil threatened to cancel his company if they wanted to advertise with them again.
Mr Neil told him: ‘Have a look at our content. You’ll find no hate. Let me know if you want to advertise. And I’ll let you know if we want your ads. Or whether we organise a boycott of you’. He added: ‘I resent even the thought that a channel of which I was chairman would peddle hate. You should know better’.
Mr Jackson hit back saying: ‘We didn’t boycott – I wanted to see the channel and am true to my word’, saying he watched Rishi Sunak’s interview last night.
A number of big name brands including IKEA, Nivea, Kopparberg, Grolsch, the Open University, Octopus Energy, Ovo Energy and insurer LV have pulled their adverts from Andrew Neil’s new channel after an online campaign led by groups including Stop Funding Hate.
MPs, free speech campaigners and business leaders branded the companies ‘anti-democratic’ and ‘hypocritical’, with Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden declaring businesses ‘must not succumb to pressure groups’.
But Co-op has broken rank despite a huge online backlash, saying it will continue to advertise on the new TV channel, the first company to do so.
After being bombarded by activists demanding it suspend its TV campaigns on GB News, the supermarket responded: ‘Our advertising approach has three principles.
‘We will, one – not seek to affect the editorial independence of publications or channels, two – not undermine the commercial value of our society for our members, and three, ensure our values and principles are clear regardless of surrounding content.’
The response prompted a number of critics to call for a boycott of Co-op while many others praised it for standing up for its principles amid the furore.
Vodafone today U-turned on its boycott of GB News with an overzealous social media executive blamed for bowing in this tweet to online harassment from left-wing pressure groups and supporters wanting to sink the new channel
Andrew Neil (pictured on the channel last night) threatened to cancel businesses who pulled ads having falsely accused the channel of spreading hate – including Octopus Energy run by Greg Jackson
Mr Neil took Octopus Energy boss Greg Jackson to task saying he resented any claims GB News would peddle hate
After being bombarded by activists demanding it suspend its TV campaigns on GB News, the Co-op responded on Twitter and said it would not be swayed
The hatred of the Stop Funding Hate fanatics: They vilified GB News even before it launched and claim to fight for tolerance – but foul-mouthed trolling is par for the course, writes GUY ADAMS
Claiming the new TV station is ‘designed to create division and demonise’ people, he declared that, unless the supermarket immediately ceased advertising there, ‘I will not spend any more of my hard-earned cash in your stores’
He has also called the Conservatives ‘a filthy party of far-Right scum’, dubbed the Tory MP Andrew Bridgen an ‘oxygen thief’ and declared Priti Patel to be a ‘vile character’
More recently, in the immediate aftermath of Prince Philip’s death, Mr Black charmingly described the late royal as ‘a man who travelled the world on taxpayers money to be racist and vile to all and sundry’
At lunchtime yesterday, the Co-op was contacted via Twitter by ‘Paul’, an avid supporter of Stop Funding Hate’s campaign against GB News.
Claiming the new TV station is ‘designed to create division and demonise’ people, he declared that, unless the supermarket immediately ceased advertising there, ‘I will not spend any more of my hard-earned cash in your stores’.
‘Paul’ did not bother to cite any evidence of actual malpractice by GB News. But he’s certainly an expert on creating division and demonising people.
For his anonymous Twitter account, which boasts nearly 1,000 followers and uses the handle @pafo1972, turns out to be dedicated to campaigning against Brexit, which he dubs ‘self-destruction in the name of small mindedness and empty nationalism’.
In keeping with this world view, he recently used the social network to contact Nigel Farage, saying: ‘What a poisonous lump of filth this w***** really is.’
He has also called the Conservatives ‘a filthy party of far-Right scum’, dubbed the Tory MP Andrew Bridgen an ‘oxygen thief’ and declared Priti Patel to be a ‘vile character’.
While the organisation claims to be ‘making hate unprofitable’, its business model instead revolves around using hashtag campaigns to empower a small army of Left-wing cranks to further their own highly partisan political agenda.
What’s more, many of its foot soldiers, who preach so earnestly about battling prejudice, turn out to be very prejudiced indeed.
Take Sam Hill, a Corbynist who tweets as @witshituk.
On Sunday afternoon, he pledged to compile a ‘boycott list’ of companies whose commercials appeared on the network, urging followers to ‘boycott every advertiser willing to support this toxic propaganda’.
There was but one problem: when he first posted that tweet, GB News had not broadcast a single programme. In other words, he was assuming that its output would be ‘toxic’ without having actually seen it!
But Mr Hill is nothing if not accustomed to nasty propaganda.
Last year, he called MPs John Redwood and Oliver Letwin ‘Tory Scum’, and used Twitter to mount a vicious attack on Rachel Riley.
The Jewish Countdown presenter’s criticism of anti-Semitism in Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party sparked a deeply misogynistic social media pile-on from the hard-Left.
Mr Hill called her a ‘vile human being’ who ‘should have stuck to maths’. More recently, this supposedly principled supporter of Stop Funding Hate was using the bully pulpit of Twitter to declare the Labour Party to be ‘morally bankrupt’ under the leadership of Sir Keir Starmer, a ‘deeply dishonest and corrupt person’ who he dubbed ‘Tory scum’.
Other leading lights in the lobby group’s online brigade of culture warriors include Will Black, a Cambridge-based writer and social anthropologist who this week dubbed GB News ‘gammon b******* news’.
Last year he went on social media to dub Tory MP Michael Fabricant ‘Fabric***’ and called Nigel Farage a ‘drunk’.
More recently, in the immediate aftermath of Prince Philip’s death, he charmingly described the late royal as ‘a man who travelled the world on taxpayers money to be racist and vile to all and sundry’.
Then there is Anthony Gladman, a beer writer who this week used Twitter to ask energy firm Ovo to boycott GB News on the grounds that it was propagating hate. Not long ago, he was the one propagating hate, using Twitter to call Boris Johnson a ‘vile treacherous charlatan’ and a ‘f****** liar’.
GB News launched on Sunday promising to be anti-woke, pro-British and cover stories differently to rivals, with prime time shows already enjoying more viewers than BBC News and Sky News.
But after just four days on air at least seven big businesses have pulled their adverts after a social media campaign whipped up by Stop Funding Hate.
A website BoycottGBNews.org has also been set up with the help of a business called ‘Ripples Campaigning’, which is run by former BBC senior content producer Louise Wikstrom whose social media posts have previously backed Labour and Jeremy Corbyn.
She told MailOnline: ‘Ripples is proud to take a stand against biased news through this campaign, together with thousands of supporters who have written to GB News’ advertisers to make their voices heard.’
But the Culture Secretary appealed for companies to not bow to the pressures of online mobs.
Mr Dowden told the Mail: ‘One of the cornerstones of our liberties is our robust, free and diverse media and GB News is a welcome addition to that diversity.
‘As we’ve seen this week with the totally unacceptable harassment of a BBC journalist, we cannot take it for granted. It is up to brands to advertise where they wish, but it would be worrying if they allow themselves to succumb to pressure groups.
‘They should note that GB News is regulated by Ofcom and held to the same high standards as every other broadcaster in the UK.’
Tory MP Craig Mackinlay branded the ad boycott of GB News as ‘unbelievable’ and ‘mad’, pledging to fight back against those businesses. He told MailOnline: ‘I am now putting together a list of beers and household products that I will not be buying. This is all part of the closing down of free speech campaign which I am afraid we are seeing across our society. It must be resisted. It is an absolute abomination’.
He added: ‘Corporates should do what they do – sell things rather than get involved with political debates.’
Fellow Conservative backbencher Andrew Bridgen said: ‘This epitomises exactly what GB News was set up to counter. The hard woke left wingers are seeking to cancel voices saying things they don’t approve of. Advertisers should do well to look at the viewing figures and remember that those who complain most on social media do not represent the mainstream view’.
Tory MP Andrew Percy said: ‘It’s completely anti-democratic and an attempt to silence alternative views. The UK has strict media rules which GB News is abiding by. If it’s good enough for the UK regulators, it should be good enough for the advertisers. These advertisers are essentially giving in to bullying by the mob.’
Dragons Den star Duncan Bannatyne told MailOnline he was ‘shocked’ at the hasty decision made by big businesses to pull adverts from GB News – just four days after a very successful launch.
The tycoon said that he would consider advertising his Bannatyne’s health clubs and gyms on the news channel because of its ‘great viewing figures’. Slamming the cancel culture he said: ‘I am just shocked that such big organisations would cancel on a new untested TV news show. Competition is good for all businesses and TV shows need competition, so should be supported’. He added: ‘I will never shop at IKEA again – oh just a minute, I never did shop there anyway’.
Trade unionist and journalist Paul Embery tweeted: ‘Stop Funding Hate is a sinister group whose ultimate aim is to prevent the dissemination of opinions with which they disagree. Don’t let anyone pretend otherwise’.
GB News chairman Andrew Neil has also hit back at IKEA and its ‘criminal’ former French boss Jean-Louis Baillot. He said: ‘IKEA has decided to boycott GB News because of our alleged values. Here are IKEA’s values — a French CEO who is a criminal with a two year suspended jail sentence for spying on staff’.
The news also sparked a consumer backlash today, with one viewer writing: ‘I’ve just completed my IKEA shelving unit. It’s a bit shakey, has no real backbone to it and it definitely leans hard to the left. #BoycottIkea for boycotting GB NEWS… many can play at that game!’
A second tweeted: ‘To my dear wife, it will delight you to hear that I will no longer subject you to a tour of IKEA. #boycott.’
Meanwhile, another Twitter user vowed to boycott all the companies who had withdrawn advertising and slammed Stop Funding Hate, saying that ‘stirring up hatred’ is the group’s ‘raison d’etre’.
Andrew Neil also retweeted messages calling the decision ‘pathetic virtue signalling’ and accusing ‘corporations of making fools of themselves’ after Stop Funding Hate challenged advertisers on social media to deprive news outlets it disagrees with of revenue.
The celebrated broadcaster and editor has pledged to confront cancel culture and expose it on the channel as supporters pointed out IKEA, who said GB News doesn’t align with its ‘humanistic values’ but still runs six stores in Saudi Arabia, where it is illegal to be gay and the state carries out scores of executions for a wide range of crimes.
Last night Swedish furniture giant IKEA said it had ‘not knowingly’ advertised on GB News. It added: ‘We are in the process of investigating how this may have occurred to ensure it won’t happen again in future, and have suspended paid display advertising in the meantime.’
Nivea, Kopparberg and Grolsch, the Open University, Ovo Energy and Octopus Energy have also pulled their adverts prompting a backlash and calls for boycott with many accusing the companies of succumbing to ‘woke zealots’.
IKEA France was yesterday fined £1million and its former CEO Baillot was handed a two-year suspended jail sentence after the company spied on its employees for three years.
The Swedish furniture giant was found guilty of setting up an elaborate system to illegally snoop on the private lives of hundreds of current staff and potential new-hires between 2009 and 2012.
The ruling was less severe than recommended by prosecutors, who accused the furniture company of illicitly carrying out ‘mass surveillance’.
Baillot, IKEA France’s boss between 1996 and 2002, was also fined £43,000 after he was found guilty of ‘receiving personal data by fraudulent means.’ He was cleared of several other charges, including ‘violating professional secrecy.’
Prosecutors claim the illegal practices date back to the early 2000s. Baillot’s lawyer, Francois Saint-Pierre, said the former IKEA boss was ‘shocked’ by the sentence and is now considering an appeal.
A union representative, Adel Amara, who was among a total of 120 plaintiffs, said he was ‘pleased’ with the outcome of the trial, but called the punishments ‘a little too lenient.’
Swedish cider brand Kopparberg was the first to bow to pressure, saying they were broadcast ‘without knowledge or consent’.
The alcohol-brand was tagged in a list of of companies that advertise on the channel on social media.
Others to pull their adverts include IKEA, Nivea, Grolsch, the Open University and Octopus Energy, prompting a backlash and calls for boycott with many accusing the companies of succumbing to ‘woke zealots’ and ‘cancel culture’.
Advertising sales for GB News are handled by Sky Media and a number of the companies said they were unaware their campaigns would appear on the new channel.
Sky Media spreads ad campaigns across its 130 channels which is normally targeted to certain audience demographics rather than specific channels.
In a message on Twitter last night Kopparberg, which is based in Bergslagen, Sweden, wrote: ‘Thanks for bringing this to our attention. We want to make it clear to everyone that our ad ran on this channel without our knowledge or consent.
‘Kopparberg is a drink for everyone and we have immediately suspended our ads from this channel pending further review of its content.’
Fellow drinks company Grolsch told ‘progressive digital campaigning platform’ Ripples: ‘This advert for Grolsch ran on the GB News channel completely without our knowledge or consent, and we’re in the process of investigating with our media partners why this happened.
‘Grolsch is a brand that prides itself on core values of inclusion and openness to all people, and we want to be clear that we do not associate ourselves with any platforms or outlets that go against these values.
‘We will do everything we possibly can to ensure that Grolsch does not appear on this channel again.’
Other companies who have been named online as advertisers but who are yet to respond include Amazon, Google, Facebook, Deliveroo, Kellogg’s, Starbucks and Vodafone.
IKEA said in its statement: ‘IKEA has not knowingly advertised on GB News, and we have safeguards in place to prevent our advertising from appearing on platforms that are not in line with our humanistic values and vision to side with the many people.
‘We are in the process of investigating how this may have occurred to ensure it won’t happen again in future, and have suspended paid display advertising in the meantime.’
The other companies said they were not aware their campaigns were being broadcast on the new channel and are reviewing their policies and pausing their adverts.
The move has triggered outrage among many online, with one branding Kopparberg’s decision ‘immature’.
Comedian and writer Geoff Norcott wrote: ‘Ok, well Kopparberg UK is no longer a drink for me. That’s how knee-jerk b******t works right?
While another commented: ‘Thank you for bringing this to my attention so I won’t buy any of your products again. You obviously mean it’s a drink for ‘everyone’ who prescribes to your way of thinking.’
Another person added: ‘What an outrageous response! I have one bottle of Kopparberg left in my fridge and it will be my last. These vile companies that don’t believe in free speech or freedom of thought do not deserve our custom.’
Meanwhile another person said: ‘I’ve got four bottles of Kopparberg in my fridge. Now getting poured down the sunk! Pandering to woke zealots will do your company harm, I for one won’t be buying or drinking your product again. Great job.’
The move comes as a recently-launched social media campaign calls for more companies, including the AA, Amazon and Boots, to remove their advertisements from the news channel.
On Sunday, journalist and broadcaster Andrew Neil pledged his 24-hour news channel would tackle cancel culture and would not be ‘yet another echo chamber for the metropolitan mindset’ as he launched his new channel.
GB News, which is aiming to reach those who feel ‘unheard’ by the media, launched at 8pm on Sunday, with a special programme titled Welcome To GB News.
It is the first new British news network in 24 years – since BBC News 24 launched in 1997. Although foreign channels have launched in the UK in that time, such as Al Jazeera English, this is the first new network specifically for UK audiences.
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