Discover more from Future News & Media
The UK's favourite news aggregator is back (sort of)
Future News 144
It was a matter of time. Popular UK political news aggregator Politics For All is back. Well, sort of.
A successor has taken up the mantle of reshaping Westminster-related stories into snappy headlines aimed at the Twitterati.
The infamous siren emoji appears alongside ‘BREAKING’ on some of the account’s most popular posts and hyperlinks to original stories are posted in follow-up tweets rather than the first post of a thread.
This canny gaming of the Twitter algorithm previously caused anger amongst some Westminster journalists, according to Politics For All founder Nick Moar (who’s now at LadBible).
They felt they weren’t given due credit for stories that they had laboured away at only for Politics For All to take their clicks.
“Some journalists had worried we were ‘stealing’ their content by publishing a summary of it. Others didn’t seem to mind. Senior journalists would even message asking us to help push their stories,” Moar wrote last year in The Spectator.
But Politics UK hasn’t received any complaints from UK politics journalists, the co-founder of the project revealed to Future News.
Bailey Nash-Gardner is the Chief Executive of NewsHub Group, the company formed in January behind Politics UK.
He is also a young Conservative Party activist, which may raise eyebrows with some since Politics UK claims to be the “fastest growing independent Twitter account for UK Politics”.
However, Nash-Gardner stressed to Future News that there are four people working on the account and they are from across the political spectrum.
“I do think it is important to emphasise that I have very little editorial involvement within the page,” he added.
A good example of non-Tory content would be the positing of an interview of Mick Lynch, the General Secretary of the RMT Trade Union, during the most recent rail strikes.
Politics UK’s posts are also less sensational than those of Politics For All, which had a knack for turning a bit of colour or secondary information (especially from the Sunday papers) into a viral piece of content.
Nash-Gardner’s team have also made extensive use of video clips, rather than relying heavily on print stories.
Then, of course, there’s also the fact that Twitter is under new management with one Mr Elon Musk at the top of boardroom table.
Moar, who did not reply to a Future News’ questions ahead of the publication of this article, never truly got to the bottom (beyond corporate vagaries) of why Twitter took down Politics For All at the height of its power. The account had reached nearly 500,000 followers by January 2022 when it was shuttered.
Musk’s more libertarian stance to free speech and his general shake-up of Twitter could stand Politics UK in good stead. So far the project hasn’t generated any revenue, but the team are taking donations to help support it.
So what does 2023 hold for Politics UK? “The mission for this year is to really grow our following and build up a strong reputation for delivering impartial news,” Nash-Gardner said.
In other words, here we go again…🚨
📺 Media and tech questions to I’m thinking about
Is the BBC caught between a rock and a hard place on impartiality?
Will BuzzFeed quizzes improve under the guise of AI?
Should we now call Twitter a fintech company?
Can Snap become one of the major social media players?
Spotify now has more than 200m paid subscribers, where does it go next?
🎙️ Podcasts I’m listening to