I wrote a post titled ‘Oi Sun, You’ve Nicked My Design’ at the time The Sun launched its anti-EU Constitution, pro-Referendum campaign on 26th September 2007. It showed the Sun’s campaign logo with EU arrows on maps targeting London – as if inspired by the Dad’s Army TV Show. I commented that I had run two similar leaflets, one in 2001 for UKIP’s general election campaign, and another in 2004 in which a large rocket badged ‘EU Constitution’ was flying out of Europe towards London. That post has now disappeared from my Blog.
I’ve found some of the 2001 leaflets we produced (or rather my mother still had them up in her attic!), and which UKIP adopted for its General Election campaign. The 2005 leaflet I will pick up in March/April, next time I’m in the UK. The Sun’s logo bears a striking resemblance to this later version.
It’s funny how the story which I wrote in a post on this blog about how these leaflets came about, and what happened to the responses (they disappeared in the mail), has also disappeared – effectively the responses were seized from the post by a government agency under the Enemy Aliens Act from WW1 (it was suggested to me by people who know about these things). Thousands of people just assumed that they had not been acknowledged.
It is pleasing to see that The Sun has carried on using the idea that I originally found worked well to get the anti-EU concept across. It took many weeks of my primitive efforts at focus group testing in early 2001, to find a graphic concept which worked. It seems that the basic concept I worked out then, has still yet to be bettered.
In 2005 I gave a copy of the 2005 Constitution-version leaflet to an individual who at the time was in Michael Howard’s advisory team (Howard was about to use my 2001 UKIP leaflet phrase ‘What’s Best For Britain’ throughout the 2005 General Election campaign). Once Cameron won the leadership, the same individual later ended up in an influential position over Cameron’s strategy. I imagine that that is how The Sun acquired the concept.
As I handed the leaflet design over to the ‘individual’ in 2005, they reacted in a way as if they thought this was material that they would not wish to be associated with. But later on, with the Conservative Party gradually becoming more strongly europolemic by SEptember 2007, maybe they found it in the file and decided to use the idea and passed it to The Sun.
I also wonder who’s been hacking into and deleting my blog posts on these issues. Last year someone jammed The Tap completely for some months, so I went to another site in Typepad for a while. The spooks who were active in blocking my mail in 2001 don’t seem to have gone away, and are now bothersome jamming/erasing internet communications.
Why don’t we wish them all a Happy Christmas – and then hope they go away and work on something that is actually threatening to Britain. Surely they can find something better to do.