Daily Mail shuts down insider blog

Middle England’s daily dose of fear, the Daily Mail, has apparently stepped in to shut down a blog that exposed the bizarre management tactics of its editor, Paul Dacre.

The Daily Mail Insider blog had a brief spell in the limelight yesterday when it was featured on the journalist gossip blog Fleet Street Blues. The site quoted a passage about the Mail’s editor, but recognised the blog’s sarcy tone by noting that it also includes this Downfall parody.

Within three hours of this post going up, the blog mysteriously disappeared, leaving some to speculate that the Mail stepped in to shut it down. Fleet Street Blues also updated its Twitter feed to this effect, saying “Yeah, apparently the powers-that-be were stirred into action. Shame. It was a good read...”

Never fear, though, blogger Brian Whelan apparently saw the closure coming, and made a text copy of it. You can read the alleged missing posts on his blog. If the posts are genuinely written by a Daily Mail Insider, then they offer a revealing insight into Dacre’s management techniques, as well as his technophobia.

“Paul Dacre refuses to have anything to do with screens,” says one post. “He believes that only lower orders use screens (that’s everyone in the office but him). If he wants to read an article he demands a paper print-out and makes any alterations in fountain pen. A minion then transfers the alterations to the article in the computer system.”

This is then followed by a quality bit of sarcasm from the author, who says: “In my opinion it is good to see someone taking a stand against the march of computers in this time of moral decline. We all rely on them far too much, and it would be much better if everyone used fountain pens.”

Meanwhile, another post reveals an interesting approach to motivating the Daily Wail’s staff. “Every day he makes it his business to tell his subordinates that they can’t do their job and that they are useless in every way. He calls them c*nts if they haven’t done too badly. Worse efforts are rewarded with five-minute tirades in which obscenities outnumber the ordinary words.”