News of The World and Big Brands Boycott: Public Feeling Strong

The News of the World phone hacking scandal seems to get worse by the minute as it seems we’re being barraged by news of yet more alleged hackings. The first we heard about the hackings concerned celebrities and other notable people, which was bad enough, but true outrage began when it was revealed that victims of crime and their families had also their phones hacked. This has led to many U.K. brands boycotting advertising with the News of the World and a big Twitter involvement showing that public feeling is strong.

The ordinary people of the UK are clearly repulsed by the phone-hacking allegations and big brands are now pulling their advertising with the News of the World and also announcing their moves on Twitter. Todd Wasserman over on Mashable tells about just some of the major brands pulling advertising, one of them being Renault UK who tweeted, “Renault has no media advertising planned with NOTW, nor will it commit to any future activity, until the formal investigation is complete.” Meanwhile a Facebook user had an idea for Mitsubishi who promptly followed up with their response on Twitter by saying, “Based on a Facebook user suggestion, Mitsubishi is donating its #NotW ad spend to the Childline charity.” Now that’s not only a very humane act but also a great marketing ploy. Ford is another major company that has pulled its advertising with News of the World.

The Co-Operative was swayed by Twitter users to change it’s mind on the boycott after originally saying it would continue its advertising. Consumers campaigned and 6,000 tweets later the Co-Op also joined the boycott, according to Marketing Week. A public enquiry into the News of the World hacking allegations has been called for from Prime Minister David Cameron. At times like this Twitter comes into its own as people band together to express outrage across the country and a report on The Drum also talks about this.

The latest news this morning is that the Royal British Legion has also dropped the News of the World as a campaign partner following the allegations surrounding the families of killed soldiers also having their phones hacked. Other big names are joining the boycott, seemingly with every minute that passes, such as Npower and Sainsbury’s. We’d like to hear your thoughts on the News of the World phone hackings. Are you impressed that the major brands are boycotting advertising with the newspaper? Do you think that sites such as Twitter have a major role to play in communicating the strength of public feeling about this? Let us know with your comments.