Guardian profile, the good, the bad and the ugly

There's a profile of me in todays guardian called "cashing in on being a nerd". I've just read it and thought it was important i commented on it. Like all people reading a profile of themselves i feel some is good, some is bad and some is factually incorrect. So here are my notes

1. I was a lowly radio producer three years ago?
ActuallyMy last day as a radio producer was at the BBC on 31 December 1999 - six years ago. My TV career started at Simply Money on 2 Jan 2000.

2. Brilliant self-publicist? If i was that good i probably wouldn't be writing this email. It's always interesting when print journalists write this about broadcasters. I trained as a broadcaster, i did a postgraduate degree in broadcast journalism. For some reason going on TV or radio is seem as self-publicising, but writing in a newspaper isn't. That's my trade, I love people to know about this site, i think it and its users are amazing. If that makes me a self-publicist so be it.

3. Richard and Judy? Never been on the programme

4. Financial qualifications zero. Quite correct, Im proudly a journalist and that's my qualification, in fact im a qualified journalist with a postgraduate diploma in broadcast journalism, the recognised industry qualification. So thats the same as all financial jounalists and Alvin Hall who's also mentioned (though alvin isn't a journalist, he used to train people about stock market software). I never claim otherwise, in fact i'm avidly not a member of the financial services community.

Also the subjects i discuss debt, consuming, shopping, how to buy, there is no financial qualification, it most certainly isn't covered by IFAs or anyone else, that's why i started doing it.

5. Makes allegations about data providers being targetted by data providers they deny it.
Of course they deny it, but it is true. Take a look at this blog to see the difference the non-profit driven ethical stance of this site actually makes.

6. Nine people all beavering away.
Quite right, in the last 14 months the site has gone from me alone to a wonderful team. Only 4 other than me are actually involved in MoneySaving and they do research and updating, the others are technical, very much needed on a site this big, as you'll all know. Im very proud the site has grown enough to enable me to have a team to help with the research, keep articles more up to date, and produce more moneysaving info. I still write all the main articles personally, edit all the others, and even within the articles i don't actually type out the recommendations and analysis still come directly from me.

7. 300,000 receive the email.
Actually it is just under 400,000(hoorah)

8. Bought a half million pound house in kensington in cash.
My house was bought for quite a bit less than half a million, but it was in cash. And I'd been saving up for a long time to do so, both from my six years as a tv/radio presenter, from my book (which as you know was a bestseller), and from this site.

I've no problem with people knowing that, I've worked hard, i practice what i breach, i luckily earn substantially more than the average salary. I'm a Money Saving Expert, what do you expect :)

9. The site's sale value.
Here's exactly the conversation. "Martin, ITV just bought friends reunited for £175 million, Moneysupermarket is worth around £800 million how much is your site worth." My answer "I suspect if i went fully commerical and dropped the ethical stance, and the fact i only ever link to best product regardless of finance it'd probably be worth £20 to £30 million, however that's not what i'm about"

10. I got a lot of job offers in the City but went into journalism instead.
Actually the city job offers were before i went into financial pr after leaving university.

11. The frustration with the experts on air.
This didn't relate to when i was a producer at the BBC, this related to when i returned as a reporter on personal finance programmes in 2003 when i had already been Money Saving Expert at simply money, when i was a producer i really didnt have the skills or knowledge base to do it.

12. Another personal finance programme is in the offing.
Actually its a slot on a non-personal finance programme starting on ITV. Make me rich is the only personal finance programme i've got.

13. Carol Vorderman campaign.
Yup, in the new year I plan to launch a petition to give to Carol to ask her to stop doing the adverts for secured debt companies. Don't let me forget. I think a woman who is known for her maths shouldn't say to people "or you could just splash out a bit" when talking about debts secured on your house. and you can take a holiday too"

Right off to bed for me!
Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.
Don't miss out on urgent MoneySaving, get my weekly e-mail at
Debt-Free Wannabee Official Nerd Club: (Honorary) Members number 000


  • Allexie
    Allexie Posts: 3,460 Forumite
    ♥♥♥ Genius - 1% inspiration and 99% doing what your mother told you. ♥♥♥

  • Flimber
    Flimber Posts: 736 Forumite
    MSE_Martin wrote:

    3. Richard and Judy? Never been on the programme


    I reckon someone is confusing you with the late, and in his own way, great Steve Whatley.

  • I looked at the front page of Guardian Money this morning and spotted Martin has got himself a new shirt! :confused: Turned to page 6 and saw a bit more of the new shirt! :confused::confused: Turned to page 8 and saw normal service resumed with the striped shirt alive and doing well:j :j

    Thanks for giving us the Deep Throat version of the interview Martin........verrrrry illuminiating. Martin Collinson might find some good receipes for sour grapes on the old style money saving board ;)
  • divadee
    divadee Posts: 10,609 Forumite
    First Post Combo Breaker First Anniversary
    well they do say dont believe all you read in teh papers, i would of thought that as seen as you do a column at the paper they might have got all the facts right!!!!

    by the way mr divadee wanted to know is the beauty queen bit right??? if it is your a lucky so and so he says !!! (and yes i have just punched him!!)
  • System
    System Posts: 178,090 Community Admin
    Photogenic Name Dropper First Post
    I think the comment about Richard and Judy was because you did a slot on 'This Morning' when they were presenters.

    Martin, it doesnt matter what anyone says, you really dont have to defend yourself. You have done really well for yourself and its all down to your own brilliance and hard work and be assured if you hadnt done so well for yourself the media wouldnt give a toss.

    Give yourself a great big pat on the back from me, and every body else you have helped to save money.
  • divadee
    divadee Posts: 10,609 Forumite
    First Post Combo Breaker First Anniversary
    Judi wrote:
    I think the comment about Richard and Judy was because you did a slot on 'This Morning' when they were presenters.

    as far as i can remember judy, richard and judy had left this morning by the time martin had joined i think he has only done it with fern and phil.
  • Allexie wrote:

    Thanks for the link Allexie, I just went to read it, laughable really!

    I'll stick to the Daily Mail on a Saturday for the TV magazine and my fix of celebrity gossip icon7.gif
  • So it's true you're dating a former beauty queen
    Sara loves Martin ;)
  • tomstickland
    tomstickland Posts: 19,538 Forumite
    First Post Combo Breaker
    Daily Mail, aha, renowned for it's unbiassed reporting and always straight with the facts, unlike the Guardian eh?!
    Happy chappy
  • :j

    Sorry I can't stop, I just read in the Guardian that I am a hyperactive
    forum it must be true :beer:



    :j :j
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