Campaigners and members took to The Co-operative Group’s Facebook pages this week urging the society to stop advertising with the Mail group of newspapers following recent articles on the late father of Labour leader Ed Miliband.

“The Co-op must be cautious over Daily Mail ad pressure”

Beth Brooks, deputy news editor

The Co-op was by no means the only Daily Mail advertiser urged to issue a moratorium on advertising, but campaigners must have fancied their chances based on the society’s ethical stance and its previous track record. It was one of the first to pull advertising in the wake of the News of the World scandal. And only last month it delisted three lads’ mags after they refused to supply their publications in modesty bags.

Justifying its decision, the Co-op said it was responding to the desire of its members.

But while many of its members might welcome a boycott of the Mail, the Co-op’s close relationship with the Labour Party may make this look more like sour grapes than a genuine ethical stance. And however underhand, a politically motivated Mail rant is in no way comparable to either displays of naked women or illegal phone tapping of an innocent, murdered girl.