Times Undertakes Multi-Bureau Rupert Murdoch Investigation

The New York Times is currently undertaking a major news investigation, led by managing editor Jill Abramson, into News Corp.’s business dealings throughout the world, according to a source with knowledge of the project.

Currently, Ms. Abramson is working outside of the newsroom, recovering from injuries sustained during a traffic accident last month.

But, as she told The Observer in an e-mail on May 26, executive editor Bill Keller has kept her quite busy.

“Bill has asked me to lead an investigative project for the next month, which I’ll mainly do from home,” Ms. Abramson wrote at the time. “It involves a group of domestic and foreign reporters, but I obviously can’t tell you what it is.”

Well, the group includes one obvious choice: media reporter Richard Siklos, who authored Shades of Black, the 1995 biography of disgraced press baron Conrad Black.

Although Mr. Siklos is currently covering the Black trial in Chicago, he’s also been busy reporting on Mr. Black’s fellow media mogul, Rupert Murdoch: He has had nine bylined pieces, including a 3,300-word cover story in the Sunday Business section, since News Corp.’s bid for Dow Jones was announced on May 1.

The investigative project also includes, according to a source at The Times, investigative editor Matt Purdy and reporters Jo Becker (in New York), Jane Perlez (in London) and Joseph Kahn (in Beijing).

Mr. Purdy did not confirm there was an investigative project underway, and referred this reporter’s questions to Ms. Abramson—who declined to comment. Mr. Siklos also declined to comment. Ms. Becker did not return calls seeking comment. Ms. Perlez and Mr. Kahn could not be reached at press time.

A News Corp. spokesperson confirmed that they knew of The Times’ investigative project, but declined to comment.

Times Undertakes Multi-Bureau Rupert Murdoch Investigation