A local newspaper tale about a dog injuring its nose has become the latest internet sensation after clocking up 131,000 page views in little more than a day.
The four-paragraph Salisbury Journal story about a pooch which hurt itself bumping into a another dog while out walking received little attention when first uploaded to the paper’s website on Saturday.
But it went stratospheric yesterday after being featured on Reddit.com, a US-owned web aggregator that features quirky stories, under the headline: “Breaking News from England.”
Among those who tweeted the story as it made its way around the worldwide web was Mock the Week presenter Dara O’Briain, and by 5pm yesterday afternoon, the story had received 131,000 web hits.
“It’s the biggest thing since I had two concrete badgers nicked from a doorstep in Basingstoke when I edited the Basingstoke Gazette,” he said.
“If you look at Reddit, dogs feature quite prominently so there is obviously a keen following for doggie stories.
“I understand from the newsdesk that it was a fairly slow news day on Saturday,” he added.
Such has been the impact of the story that the paper posted a follow-up on its website last night headlined: “Dog injures nose – the update you’ve all been waiting for.”
It read: “More than 130,000 people logged on to view our top story today. Even Mock the Week star Dara O’Briain tweeted about it.
“What’s that, I hear you cry? Was Cheryl Cole kissing David Beckham in the cathedral? Nope. Our most viewed story ever involved a dog, with an injured nose.
“At only four sentences long, it probably breaks most records for page impressions per word anywhere on the web.”
Reaction from Journal readers ranged from concern about the dog’s sense of smell to the possible impact of the story on the general election campaign.
One comment under the story read: “It’s outrageous that something like this is allowed to happen in this country. I want this to be addressed in the next prime ministeral debates. Let’s see Nick Clegg talk himself out of this one.”
Steve Blethyn (27/04/2010 09:13:00)
Good story, being a dog owner myself, I think this is the dogs b0££@#
Lensman (27/04/2010 09:21:37)
Almost as good as ‘Toast fire in Dukinfield’ and ‘Street lamp goes out in Stalybridge’ which I remember featuring in a very slow news week in my old paper the Ashton under Lyne Reporter, many years ago.
Newshound (27/04/2010 10:10:59)
I remember my old paper featuring a story about a fire that destroyed a plastic cup, adding: “There were no reports of injuries.”
Lord Lucan (27/04/2010 15:27:19)
My favourite was a short story about a small fire in a house… the headline? Candle burns.
Murray Morse (28/04/2010 10:44:04)
Nice one Bill! Another stonking exclusive.
We’d have been interested in taking the story ourselves here at the Daily Sport had the hound been doing it doggy-style when it was injured.
ex-JPthankgoodness (29/04/2010 19:18:04)
I still cringe when I remember my Midweek Observer (Accrington) splash: ‘Flu epidemic misses Accrington’
Geoff Perfitt (30/04/2010 12:55:19)
One of my fondest memories is of a filler nib in the Isle of Wight County Press in the 1970s which reported “A small plank was stolen from the garden of a house in Alpine Road, Ventnor, on Friday evening. It was about five ft long and 18 inches wide. Entry was made through an insecure front gate. Police are appealing for witnesses.” I kept the cutting pinned over my desk for years.