Published On: Thu, Apr 30th, 2020

Public: Daily Mail and Sun worst at covering coronavirus

The public think the Sun and the Daily Mail have been the worst media outlets at covering coronavirus, a new poll finds.

The Sun scored the worst, with 24% thinking they’ve done a bad job versus just 6% who say they’ve done well.

Second worst was the Daily Mail – 22% said they’ve done badly and just 10% said they’d done well.

The media outlets which fared best were the television news (BBC, ITV, C4, Sky) and the Guardian.

In March, the Daily Mail was criticised for encouraging readers to visit the countryside and then, a few days later, attacking ‘covidiots’ who breached lockdown guidance to visit the countryside.

The Daily Mail and Sun have long been known for their inaccuracies. For three years in a row, the Daily Mail has received the most rulings against it from the IPSO regulator. The Sun got the third most rulings, after the Times, this year.

Some of the Daily Mail’s blunders include misreporting Labour’s inheritance tax plans and a front-page story falsely claiming an Iraqi man had been “caught red-handed with a bomb”.

Despite its poor reputation, many Daily Mail journalists have been hired as government spin doctors.

The Sun has also has a reputation for inaccuracy. Last July, it reported that Algerians celebrating a football victory had run over and killed a mother and left her baby in a critical condition.

As revealed by Left Foot Forward, this was not true. A woman had been hit by a car but the driver was French-Moroccan and there was no evidence of any link to Algerian football celebrations.

In 2018, the Sun claimed it had made “an honest mistake” after publishing inaccurate claims that goods would be cheaper if Jeremy Corbyn didn’t become Prime Minister.

In 2019, they made a similar error after claming that “Corb’s tax bombshell” would cost the average Sun reader £2,400. IPSO ruled this was a “misleading” report on Tory research and ordered them to print a correction.

Joe Lo is a co-editor of Left Foot Forward

Left Foot Forward

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