Nigel Farage has been slammed for “dodging journalists” after he revealed his strategy for bypassing the news media.
Last week, we revealed that Farage is planning to use social media to circumvent the mainstream press and control his own narrative. He claimed that this was to avoid a “Remainer” bias in the media, adding that the Brexit Party’s videos reach more people than broadcasts from mainstream media channels.
However, speaking to Scram News, Michelle Stanistreet, General Secretary of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ), said that avoiding mainstream media channels was tantamount to “dodging journalists” and said that media scrutiny was “vital for a functioning democratic society”.
She said: “Media scrutiny of politicians and political parties is vital for a functioning democratic society. Dodging journalists and their questions isn’t something any serious minded politician should do.”
Farage’s actions come as part of a wider trend of politicians avoiding the media. During Boris Johnson’s leadership campaign, he was widely criticised for not attending televised debates and for avoiding press scrutiny.
And, last week, the BBC’s Director General called on politicians to agree to long-form interviews to stop bypassing scrutiny.
Nigel Farage is now emulating these denounced strategies – amplifying his message through social media so the public will only hear one side (his side) of the argument.