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Rupert Murdoch

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  • Contradicting Fox VP, Murdoch agrees with Beck: Obama is a racist

    ››› ››› JULIE MILLICAN

    Following Glenn Beck's description of President Obama as a "racist" who has "a deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture," Fox News senior vice president of programming Bill Shine distanced the network from Beck's comments, reportedly saying that "Beck expressed a personal opinion which represented his own views, not those of the Fox News Channel." But in a recent interview with Sky News Australia, Rupert Murdoch, chairman of News Corp., the parent company of Fox News, said that Beck "was right" in his characterization.

  • Murdoch agrees with Beck that Obama is a racist

    Blog ››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

    Back in July, after Glenn Beck called President Obama a racist, NBC News' First Read blog stated:

    What's most amazing about this episode is that what Beck said isn't a fireable or even a SUSPENDABLE offense by his bosses. There was a time when outrageous rants like this would actually cost the ranters their jobs. But not anymore; if anything, it's now encouraged

    Today, we found out why there were no repercussions whatsoever for Beck's comment - his boss agrees with him. As Think Progress noted, in an interview with Sky News Australia, Rupert Murdoch said of the comment:

    On the racist thing, that caused a grilling. But he did make a very racist comment. Ahhh...about, you know, blacks and whites and so on, and which he said in his campaign he would be completely above. And um, that was something which perhaps shouldn't have been said about the President, but if you actually assess what he was talking about, he was right.

    So there you have it. Fox News' host calls the president of the United States a racist, Fox News' owner agrees with him, and Fox News' president has a long history of appealing to racial fears and biases for political gain as a Republican strategist. But of course, Fox News is a legitimate news organization.

  • Rupert Murdoch, tech-genius, preparing for war with Google?

    Blog ››› ››› KARL FRISCH

    He failed miserably with MySpace.

    He launched the right-wing TheFoxNation.com claiming it was "time to say 'no' to biased media and 'yes' to fair play and free speech." Quit laughing.

    He may be interested in buying Twitter.com.

    He paid big bucks to settle hacking lawsuits.

    Now, Rupert Murdoch, chairman of News Corp the parent company of Fox News, is apparently readying himself for war with Google.

    Seriously.

    The Guardian reports:

    Rupert Murdoch says he will remove stories from Google's search index as a way to encourage people to pay for content online.

    […]

    In recent months, Murdoch his lieutenants have stepped up their war of words with Google, accusing it of "kleptomania" and acting as a "parasite" for including News Corp content in its Google News pages. But asked why News Corp executives had not chosen to simply remove their websites entirely from Google's search indexes – a simple technical operation – Murdoch said just such a move was on the cards.

    "I think we will, but that's when we start charging," he said. "We have it already with the Wall Street Journal. We have a wall, but it's not right to the ceiling. You can get, usually, the first paragraph from any story - but if you're not a paying subscriber to WSJ.com all you get is a paragraph and a subscription form."

    The 78-year-old mogul's assertion, however, is not actually correct: users who click through to screened WSJ.com articles from Google searches are usually offered the full text of the story without any subscription block. It is only users who find their way to the story through the Wall Street Journal's website who are told they must subscribe before they can read further.

    […]

    Murdoch's attitude towards the internet - which appeared to have thawed when he bought social networking site MySpace for $580m in 2005 - has stiffened more recently.

    […]

    Additionally, it emerged that MySpace, which has struggled in the face of competition from Facebook in recent years, was due to fall short of its targets in a lucrative search deal with Google – a slip that could cost the site more than $100m in payments from the internet advertising giant.

    Actually, it might not be that bad if Murdoch pulls News Corp content off of Google. Think of the millions of people that would be inoculated from his... ummm "fair and balance" approach to journalism.

    UPDATE: Google has responded. This Telegraph headline says it all: "Google: Rupert Murdoch Can Block Us If He Wants To."

  • Rupert Murdoch pays big bucks to settle hacking lawsuits

    Blog ››› ››› KARL FRISCH

    According to a report in The Guardian, Rupert Murdoch – chairman of News Corp, the parent company of Fox News – has "paid out more than £1m (about $1.6 million) to settle legal cases that threatened to reveal evidence of his journalists' repeated involvement in the use of criminal methods to get stories."

    Fair and balanced (and illegally obtained?)

    Romenesko summarized the sordid story:

    ...Rupert Murdoch's British newspaper subsidiary paid about $1.6 million to settle court cases involving allegations that its reporters worked with private investigators to hack into numerous public figures' cellphones. Murdoch tells Bloomberg News that's news to him. "If that had happened, I would know about it."

  • Does Rupert Murdoch have his eye on Twitter?

    Blog ››› ››› KARL FRISCH

    As if his takeover of MySpace wasn't enough.

    The Guardian reports on speculation that Rupert Murdoch, chairman of News Corp the parent company of Fox News, "could be ready to make a play for [Twitter]."

    From The Guardian (emphasis added):

    As the media world's most powerful figures gather in Sun Valley, Idaho to discuss the state of the industry the topics are likely to range far and wide. But aside from subjects like the economy and the influence of the internet, one question is likely to dominate conversations among the event's moguls and millionaires: will anyone broker a deal to buy Twitter?

    The hyped internet company's chief executive, Evan Williams, is one of hundreds of faces attending the shindig - a high-profile but secretive event organised by investment group Allen & Co. The fact that his fellow attendees reads like a Who's Who of the internet industry - including Google boss Eric Schmidt, Amazon's Jeff Bezos, new AOL chief Tim Armstrong, and media magnates Barry Diller and Rupert Murdoch - has lead some to speculate that an acquisition could be on the cards.

    Among those who believe a deal could be brokered at Sun Valley is journalist and entrepreneur Michael Wolff, who believes Murdoch could be ready to make a play for the San Francisco startup.

    Talking to Yahoo, Wolff said that Murdoch showed no evidence of regretting the purchase of MySpace, the social network he bought in 2005 that recently underwent severe cutbacks.

    "I don't think he feels that he was burned badly," he said. "They made a good deal and then the company soared to a theoretical valuation of $15bn. Where is it now? Certainly not at $15bn, but I think it's probably over $600m - though maybe not too much."

    Wolff, who wrote a biography of the 78-year-old and now runs a news aggregation website, said that Twitter could add substance to Murdoch's online empire.

    "I think they would say that they were caught," he said of the MySpace acquisition. 'They didn't have the technological heft to support this kind of company. Could they get that technological heft by adding Twitter to their formidable new media assets?"

    For what it's worth you can follow me on Twitter @KarlFrisch and Media Matters @MMFA. Hurry before Murdoch kicks us off. Sigh.

  • Rupert Murdoch's MySpace blunder

    Blog ››› ››› KARL FRISCH

    Via Romenesko:

    MySpace has become a textbook case of how quickly a digital juggernaut can become a has-been, writes Matthew Flamm. The head of a research firm tells him: "It may be that Rupert [Murdoch] is ultimately a newspaper guy. The idea [with MySpace] may have been, 'We bought you, so make it happen for us.'"

    Perhaps Rupert just couldn't figure out how to force one point of view down the throats of a few million users.

    Go! Do things internets! I command thee!

  • News Corp.'s diversity council

    Blog ››› ››› KARL FRISCH

    Well, they sure will be busy.

    Via the Associated Press:

    News Corp. has agreed to form an external diversity council after meeting with civil rights groups about a New York Post cartoon that critics said likened President Barack Obama to a dead chimpanzee.

    The company will form a "diversity community council" in New York City that will meet with senior company executives twice a year, NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous said Wednesday. It also will include a statement of commitment to diversity in its annual report.

    So, this is a council for ALL of News Corp., and it will be meeting twice a year. Even if Fox News (owned by News Corp.) alone had daily meetings, I'm not sure it would result in much of an improvement.

    After all, Rupert Murdoch launched the News Corp. green initiative two years ago, and Fox News personalities still have trouble accepting the reality of climate change science.

    I'm happy the NAACP and other civil rights leaders have brought about some form of change at News Corp. It remains to be seen, though, if News Corp.'s commitment on the issue is anything more than another PR stunt.

  • Rupert Murdoch: Obama Policies "Dangerous"

    Blog ››› ››› KARL FRISCH

    If there was any doubt over what News Corp. (Fox News' parent company) chairman Rupert Murdoch thinks of President Obama's policies, this should clear things up.

    Per Danny Shea at the Huffington Post:

    Rupert Murdoch told Fox Business Network's Neil Cavuto Monday morning that Barack Obama is not an extremist but that his policies "dangerous" for America. He also said that the Boston Globe will not disappear and that his recently installed #2, Chase Carey, is by no means his "heir apparent."

    "I think Barack Obama would describe himself as a pragmatic leftist but he's not an extremist," Murdoch said. "I think he sees himself as a president for change and that involves bigger government. He's made no secret of that. I think that's dangerous."

  • Murdoch to achieve carbon neutrality with credits, but Fox employees call them a sham

    ››› ››› ANDREW IRONSIDE

    In a recent article, London-based magazine Environment Finance reported that Rupert Murdoch will take steps "to cut carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from his media empire" -- which includes Fox News Channel -- "to zero by 2010." However, in addition to Fox News' Sean Hannity and John Gibson, FoxNews.com posts have directly attacked the purchasing of carbon credits to offset one's "carbon footprint" and have mocked Al Gore's reported use of them.