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article imageOp-Ed: 17-year-old vs Rupert Murdoch? Guess who's winning?

By Paul Wallis     May 4, 2015 in Internet
London - A 17-year-old fan of UK Labour leader Ed Miliband got the Murdoch press camped on the doorstep and following her relatives after getting attention as part of the #Milifandom group. The Sun apparently got interested, and things deteriorated from there.
It’s quite a tale of midget vs giant. #Milifandom did a video called “Milibae,” which is sort of slang for “Mili babe,” a term of romantic affection, about the rise of a “typical British underdog.” The Sun tracked down her father and grandfather, and antagonized her grandmother, arriving at her bungalow.
Her father only found out about Milifandom from the reporters when they arrived at his door. Abby, less than thrilled, went on the attack on Twitter and Buzzfeed. Talk about a generational clash — young girl and new media vs octogenarian and old media. The attack has been pretty one sided, with Abby tweeting Rupert in person.
Murdoch, to his credit, hasn’t put his foot in his mouth — yet, at least. It’s also rather unlikely that he’d have sent armies of paparazzi to create a PR disaster for one of his papers. No doubt the usual Mensa society of sensitive souls at News Corp’s least socially adept branch have done that for him.
There are many people who’d never dare say “You disgust me,” to Rupert, with good reason, but that was Abby’s approach. She didn’t like the UK paparazzi (who does, or ever has?) but the family witch hunt was the main topic of her fury.
One of the other reasons for that fury is the typical UK political distortion of image. There’s a normal extreme of cattiness in UK media during elections, higher even than the usual tabloid standard. There are even #Milifandom pages by “Odd Miliband… Enough said. The Milifandom people aren’t buying it. That may well make a difference in an election where the pundits are predicting a hung Parliament.
Another possible reason is that the UK political scene is hardly the place for high colour these days. The current government, which isn’t quite as much loathed as its predecessors, is nevertheless getting a bit bleak in terms of excitement.
Milfandom hasn’t entirely penetrated the national psyche. Miliband reportedly told his wife he had a fan club on Twitter, to which she apparently replied that it must be a case of mistaken identity. British humour will always be British humour, thank God.
Meanwhile, Milifans are putting their hero’s face on other heros, including Batman, and adding crowns of flowers to his heads. That’s another English tradition, dating back thousands of years. Maybe the national subconscious has been reborn… on Twitter and YouTube. Whatever the case, the Milifans have taken on a giant few others have ever taken on at all.
Check out #Milifandom Abby for the latest in the battle of Half Pint vs Half Arse Media.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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