THE CONTINUED ADVENTURES OF RUPERT MURDOCH ON TWITTER
News Corp. owner Rupert Murdoch sometimes thinks “out loud” on his Twitter feed, pondering recent news and issuing his own opinions. Today, while musing on the split between Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes, Mr. Murdoch dropped this doozy:
Rupert Murdoch didn’t overlook The Wall Street Journal in his publicity blitz to promote News Corp.’s plan to split up into two publicly traded companies, one for newspapers and publishing, one for television and entertainment.
News Corp. chairman Rupert Murdoch confirmed reports that he will divide the corporation into two companies—one for television and entertainment, one for newspapers and publishing—in a message to employees today.
The lengthy memo, obtained by the The New York Times, touches on everything from the First Amendment to the iPad but does not mention the ongoing phone-hacking and bribery scandal in the UK. Some think the restructuring, on which they’ll reportedly be advised by Goldman Sachs, is an attempt to protect top management from this or future messes.
News Corp. Meltdown
Tony Blair’s tanned and confident appearance before the UK government’s media ethics probe today was briefly interrupted when a heckler entered the proceedings and accused the former prime minister of profiting off the Iraq war through a contract with JP Morgan.
Want to see how Rupert Murdoch-owned newspapers re-write Rupert Murdoch stories in real time? First, three quick thing to keep in mind:
- The Times of London is a Times Newspapers-owned newspaper.
- Times Newspapers is a subsidiary of News International.
- Which is a subsidiary of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp.
A report published by the House of Commons’ select committee today concluded that Rupert Murdoch is “not a fit person” to run a major international corporation, according to The Guardian. The Observer reached a similar conclusion while reading Mr. Murdoch’s batty Twitter feed.
News Corp. Meltdown
Members of the British government are calling for Tory minister of culture Jeremy Hunt’s head, The Guardian reports, after an ongoing media ethics investigation revealed Mr. Hunt’s office was in cahoots with the Murdoch clan leading up to News Corp.’s failed bid to take over British broadcaster BSkyB.
Instead, Mr. Hunt’s adviser Adam Smith fell on his sword, resigning just an hour before the cabinet minister was scheduled to defend himself before the House of Commons today. There, Mr. Hunt said his actions should be judged by Lord Justice Leveson, who is leading the press probe.
“When posh boys are in trouble, they sack the servants,” quipped Labour MP Dennis Skinner.
News Corp shogun and avid tweeter Rupert Murdoch will be in the hot seat again this week, testifying under oath in the United Kingdom’s “Leveson Inquiry” into press practices. The 81-year-old billionaire will face new questions regarding phone-hacking and his and his company’s relationship with U.K. political figures.
Mr. Murdoch’s son James, age 39, will answer questions in the same hearing Tuesday and the elder Mr. Murdoch is expected to appear Wednesday and Thursday.
A trio of civil lawsuits will be filed in American courts against Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. Reports in the Daily Mail and Daily Beast indicate attorney Mark Lewis is prepared to file suit on behalf of three unnamed clients in America, claiming the phone hacking, believed to be a U.K. phenomenon until now, took place here as well:
A reporter’s critical tweet about The Daily‘s editing–published only after he’d tendered his resignation–activated News Corp.’s super-vindictive N.D.A squad, Romenesko reports.
“@daily story on Iranian ninjas has nothing to do with my reporting,” politics reporter Luke Kummer tweeted Feb. 17. “I object to it in every way. I wrote straight w/o absurd sensationalism.”
The same day, News Corp. HR manager Lainie Bontzolakes emailed Mr. Kummer to remind him of the non-disclosure/non-compete agreement he signed.