Regarded as "scandal mongering" and "scurrilious", the paper carries Page 3 girl pictures and salacious stories.
Blogger hired to edit print newspaper
Slater, who is no stranger to controversy himself, says he plans to shift the emphasis to more hard news and opinion pitched at the "working bloke" and written in a "blunt and forthright manner".
His Whaleoil blog is far more popular than the online version of Truth, which sells about 10,000 copies per issue in print.
Slater – the son of a former National Party president, John Slater – has been fined for breaching name suppression orders in a series of cases involving high profile defendants.
But he has a wide following and has pledged to transform Truth with an injection of his own irreverent style. He says: "No bastard wants to read old news – they can get that online. We'll be more of a views-paper that promises to deliver REAL news, REAL opinion.
"The people are numb from the eyes down with the diet of PR'd crap they get now. I will not do it to them anymore – it's not right."
Well done Whale; the story of his elevation certainly has news value. And the concept of the Truth becoming a views-paper is an interesting one; one we will watch with interest.
Not everyone is cheering Slater's appointment though. Labour MP and self-described communications expert said on Twitter that she "feels slightly ill" at the news, whilst over at The Standard, Lprent has been as churlish as one might expect given that the Standardistas are miffed that both Whaleoil and Kiwiblog regularly out-rank them by some distance on the Open Parachute rankings.
And the first comment on the Standard thread is from Martyn Bradbury and reads thus:
I’ve resigned and so has Ross Meurant
That prompted a response on Twitter from quick-witted Listener columnist Jane Clifton:
Given that not much more than a year ago Cameron Slater was in the depths of serious and debilitating clinical depression, he has done remarkably well. His output at Whaleoil, whether you agree with the content or not is prolific, and he is like a dog with a bone; as we noted yesterday if anyone has the sheer bloody-mindedness to make the Truth a half-decent rag again it is Cameron Slater. If he rarks up the political Left in the process, that's simply an added bonus!