Hate row

Neil accuses boycott bosses of ‘bowing to pressure’

Andrew Neil: ‘not a scintilla of hate’

GB News chairman Andrew Neil has used an on-air bulletin to criticise companies and advertising agencies for withdrawing commercials from the new TV channel.

Grolsch, Ikea, Kopparberg, Octopus Energy and Nivea are among the brands that pulled or suspended adverts, claiming concerns over the channel’s editorial stance.

Today some indicated they would re-think their positions. Price comparison website Moneysupermarket tweeted: “Just to confirm that Moneysupermarket is not boycotting its advertising on GB News, sorry for any confusion caused.”

Furniture retailer Ikea and telecoms firm Vodafone also said they may resume advertising with the channel.

The boycott was associated with a campaign by the online group Stop Funding Hate (SFH) which Mr Neil has accused of peddling “woke nonsense”.

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The row has erupted just days after GB News launched as an alternative to the round-the-clock news services provided by the BBC and Sky.

Some commentators claim it will be a UK version of Fox News, with a radical right-wing agenda.

Mr Neil gave his response during a Media Watch special, saying: “We ask companies boycotting GB News for peddling hate: what on earth are you talking about?”

Listing a series of stories the channel has covered from around the country since its launch on Sunday night, he said: “There isn’t a scintilla of hate in any of them.

“The only hate this channel has broadcast was when we showed film of a BBC Newsnight reporter being attacked by a baying anti-lockdown mob, and we condemn that unreservedly.”

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