ROBERT FISHMAN (MOFFETT NATHANSON): Can you discuss whether the departure of Tucker Carlson will lead to changes in the primetime programming strategy and the potential opportunities for more national advertising?
LACHLAN MURDOCH: So, I’m obviously limited about what I can say about any ongoing litigation, but I can make the following comments in regards to Dominion. And I refer to some of this in my prepared remarks.
Look, as we’ve stated many times, we always acted as a news organization reporting on the newsworthy events of the day, which certainly included allegations being made by the sitting president of the United States and his lawyers in the aftermath of a hotly contested presidential election. And we have been and we remain confident in the merits of our position that the First Amendment protects a news organization’s reporting of allegations being made by a sitting president of the United States. However, the Delaware court severely limited our defenses at trial through pretrial rulings, one example being not being able to point to the newsworthy nature of the allegations. So, we determined that the best course of action for the company and its shareholders was to settle instead of proceeding with a six week trial and potentially two or even three years of appeals.
As you know, we have a pending case with Smartmatic, which is a fundamentally different case than Dominion, in that all of our full complement of First Amendment defenses remain, and we’ll be ready to defend this case surrounding extremely newsworthy events when it goes to trial, likely not until the calendar year 2025.
As regards to our programming strategy in primetime, there’s no change to our programming strategy at Fox News. It’s obviously a successful strategy, and as always, you know, we are adjusting our programming and our line up and that’s what we, you know, continue to do. We are pleased with the strength of the advertising demand throughout our schedule, but particularly primetime.