Saturday, July 09, 2011
TODAY LONDON, TOMORROW THE WORLD?
Dare we hope that this might really be the decline and fall of the Murdoch Empire?
“News Corp. share values tanked to such an extent that it was estimated Murdoch and his family lost hundreds of millions on Wednesday alone. And the closure of a major property, and the threat to a high-stakes deal, will likely make things worse. British Prime Minister David Cameron, a favorite of Murdoch’s media, had made his break from Murdoch’s grip, declaring: “Let us be clear. There will be an inquiry, perhaps inquiries, into events. It is no longer just celebrities and politicians, but murder victims. The whole country is appalled.” Appalled he should be. Every hour brings new revelations of hacking—the BBC says thousands of cellphone accounts may have been targeted by Murdoch’s minions—that has violated the privacy rights of politicians, celebrities, soldiers, crime victims and others. Should Americans be appalled by a scandal in Britain? Certainly. It raises huge questions about how news stories are and will be obtained in an era of new media, and about the extent to which supposedly personal communications are private. These are not just British questions. Ask Anthony Weiner. And they also raise questions about how Murdoch’s media plays politics —on camera, and off. Murdoch’s empire is not merely a network of media that spreads around the world. It is widely viewed as a political project that is usually conservative, frequently prowar and consistently corporate-friendly. Above all, it has maintained influence over the political players who make definitional decisions about the shape of the media landscape on which News Corp. is often a dominant player. “The relationship between politicians and Rupert Murdoch’s newspaper empire is also under close scrutiny,” explained the BBC on Thursday, noting that “media commentators have argued that for the past two decades no politician with any prospect of power has dared to attack his empire.” (Click here for more)
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Posted by Mick at 7/09/2011 05:04:00 AM