Holy Moly, often known as "HM", was an entertainment website based in the UK and had similarities to Popbitch, Anorak and B3ta. It published (often mocking) gossip items related to celebrities, notably Amy Winehouse, Sienna Miller, Britney Spears, Tom Cruise and Paris Hilton. The website's scoops were often copied in the gossip pages of British tabloids such as The Sun the Daily Mirror and the Daily Star. Sometimes Holy Moly would announce news before tabloids, for example, Madonna's divorce from Guy Ritchie four months before The Sun's front page 'exclusive'..
Its content was usually extremely scathing, for example a typical news item reads, "Lady Gaga covers up her face with gimp mask, improves".
The phrase "Holy Moly" is an exclamation of surprise that dates from at least 1892.
The MediaGuardian website claims that the gossip was "supplied by an army of around 100 industry insiders". In November 2007, Sky News' James Silver interviewed Mr. Holy Moly – the interview revealed that he had started the website on a secret laptop whilst working at Sky News. Recently, he has appeared frequently on BBC Radio Five Live's Richard Bacon show as the presenter's friend and has maintained his personal anonymity, albeit revealing a distinctly Derbyshire accent. February 2008, he appeared on Channel 4's chat show The Richard & Judy Show, attacking photos of celebrities such as Britney Spears, Amy Winehouse and Heather Mills-McCartney and declaring that these paparazzi are damaging the business.
On 10 March 2015, it was announced that Holy Moly was to close down.
As well as the main section, the website used to contain other sections which no longer exist:
The Corner – users complain with a short comment about anything which they dislike or are annoyed by. Originally just for celebrities (example: "Gordon Ramsay – for having a head like a cauliflower") but now features more varied entries such as "Perfume adverts on TV", "Heat magazine".
The Heroes, previously "Sacred Cows" – added more recently; opposite to the Corner in that users talk positively, again about celebrities and other things.
The Rules – users contribute non-serious "rules" which tend to be statements or irreverent advice to groups of people. For example: "Nobody in London listens to Radio 1" and "Right now there is a bloke in Essex on the phone to his supplier in China trying to cancel his order of 10,000 st George flags for cars" (sic). The latter is a reference to the England football team failing to qualify for Euro 2008.
HMTV – An Internet TV Channel encompassing all of the video-content created by Holy Moly, mainly irreverent interviews conducted by Matt Edmondson but also including home-grown friendly paparazzi video.
This is a spin-off website (formerly at http://www.goalymoly.co.uk) from the same team, focusing on "breaking football news, transfer and sacking gossip, WAGs & pictures". This has similar features to the main site, namely The Korner, The Heroes and The Rules. It was briefly launched in 2007 but went on hiatus for four years, and has since relaunched in April 2010.