The thing is, it’s true and we all know it. But we’ve all known it for the best part of three years – where have these guys been?
And why are they seemingly ripping off the concept that was tried (and failed so badly the URL is now a generic directory site) with the last attempt at a “pro” UK political blog, Mink Media’s “The Honourable Fiend” (launched in November 2004, briefly entertaining, but soon barely updated or read)? Hell, even the name – “Westmonster” from Messy Media – is reminiscent… (Or have they been reading entertaining EU blog Berlaymonster? Or is it just a stupidly obvious semi-pun?)
Most importantly, though, why do they think that launching a garishly-designed pink blog full of short “witty”, gossipy entries is the way to make money with online political coverage?
“If we were to try and do Wonkettte over here, I think it would fall flat, because the voice is not something that a British audience would respond to… Wonkette is very much a Washington title. I think we would like Westmonster to be more about politics in the round… It’s about making these people [politicians] into personalities,” say the founders.
Welcome to the world of UK political blogs, chaps – you’ve got some catching up to do…
(Word of advice, though – you’re not off to a bad start, but a decent proportion of blog readers – far more than the web average – use Firefox with AdAware, so your MPU, left-hand skyscraper and top banner aren’t going to show up. Your advertisers aren’t going to be best pleased if readers don’t see their ads, and as a commercial venture, that could be fatal… Know your audience…)