Wednesday, October 13, 2010


According to Kelvin McKenzie, ex-editor of The Sun, having the McCanns on the front page of a newspaper means the paper will sell up to 15,000 more copies. The McCanns are a major cash cow for newspapers and they have been used shamelessly.

Any exploitation has been a two-way street. The McCanns have used the papers to spread their story and the papers have used the McCanns to sell copies. This Faustian pact served their interests for a long while, the problem is that when you do a deal with the devil you tend to lose your soul.
Even if they are used to sell newspapers, the fact that the sales volume increases is because people are interested in the ongoing story. The fact that people are interested does not mean that they regard the McCanns of playing the media and does not mean they are any less sympathetic.

The McCanns were sympathetic at first, only a monster would be unmoved by the plight of grieving parents. However, as we’ve learnt more about them they’ve become more unlikeable and doubts have emerged about their own conduct. The media haven’t needed to do any knocking down, the McCanns have shown themselves quite capable of providing enough material to criticise them as it is.

Her parents have been complicit in their own downfall. They are the ones who left their three small children alone while they could eat and drink in peace. No good parent would even think about doing such a thing and whilst it in no way excuses the taking of Madeleine it does account for some of the lack of sympathy the public feel towards her parents.

Her parents and their PR machine have created a monster, they’ve clamoured for every bit of press that was going, supposedly to get Madeleine’s face out there but in all likelihood because they like being the centre of attention. Having created this monster it is hardly fair for them to complain when it turns around and bites them.

There is something strange and unlikeable about the McCanns. People haven’t lost sympathy for the disappearance of their daughter for any other reason than the McCanns themselves don’t seem to deserve any. Kate is far too aloof and Gerry too professional. They also have a strong whiff of suspicion hanging around them.