The Daily Express has been criticised by pollsters for publishing the results of an "exclusive" online vote from its own website on Friday's front page.
The Richard Desmond-owned tabloid declared it was a "shock result" that "92% want to quit the EU."
But the chief executive of one of Britain's biggest polling companies, Ben Page, derided it as a "marvellous example of voodoo polling of self-selecting sample".
Marvellous example of voodoo polling of self selecting sample https://t.co/gKftZ84wMa— Ben Page, Ipsos MORI (@benatipsosmori) February 4, 2016
"Shocking New Poll Reveals 100% Of Daily Express Readers Are Daily Express Readers," one Twitter user suggested as an alternate headline.
Shocking New Poll Reveals 100% Of Daily Express Readers Are Daily Express Readers. pic.twitter.com/ae4b0s9mbf— Gabe (@GML1320) February 5, 2016
"92% [of Express readers who took a poll on the Express website]"... pic.twitter.com/DnheSUQp5h— The Media Blog (@TheMediaTweets) February 4, 2016
While another was left surprised the anti-EU advocate percentage wasn't higher still.
92% of Express readers want to leave the EU, down from 108% in December— Election Data (@election_data) February 4, 2016
Ukip, the eurosceptic party backed in last year's general election by the Express, were seemingly so keen to distance themselves from the findings they derided them for tarnishing the 'Leave' movement's reputation.
"Stupid. Damages credibility of the whole movement. Sort it out @Daily_Express," the tweet read.
It was deleted swiftly after being posted.
And The Sun's head of PR, Dylan Sharpe labelled the stunt "remarkable".
The Daily Express has splashed an online poll held on its website. Remarkable pic.twitter.com/feAk1oULsJ— Dylan Sharpe (@dylsharpe) February 5, 2016
A politics professor, Matt Goodwin, warned it was just the start of a long period of "madness" in the turbulent run-up to Britons deciding whether to leave or remain in the EU.
"Exclusive online poll reveals 92% Express readers want out of EU" <-- Get ready folks. We're heading into madness. https://t.co/GM9Ht64KB8— Matthew Goodwin (@GoodwinMJ) February 4, 2016
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