I went out to meet my friend for a coffee for a couple of hours and this all kicks off!
After 168 years in print, The News of the World is to be shut down. Sunday coming will be the last edition of the paper, is this last-ditch attempt at getting a few more sales?
You’ve got to wonder why Rupert Murdoch, and his son James, are willing to sacrifice the staff at the newspaper and the newspaper itself as opposed to Rebekah Brooks. I am really starting to think Ms Brooks has something over the family. Why else would she be allowed to keep her job in the face of such a backlash?
After losing so many lucrative advertising contracts, I felt it was only a matter of time until NOTW went under. Perhaps the Murdoch men’s move comes to avoid the paper going bust and saving a little bit of face. That said, it could also be an attempt to salvage their BSkyB takeover which has now been put on hold.
News International apparently switched off Twitter services to stop its staff communicating. It has also been said that Brooks offered her resignation last night but it was rejected by News Corps in New York.
It has to be said that the hacking scandal happened several years ago and that many of the staff working at NOTW now may not have been there when these crimes took place. But Rebekah Brooks was. Earlier this week, News International claimed that the phone hacking was due to one rogue reporter, although we now know that isn’t true, why are hundreds of staff being penalised? Staff at the paper have been given 90 days notice despite selling 4 out of 10 newspapers on a Sunday. I think it is a disgrace that many potentially innocent journalists are now being cut loose to save one woman’s skin. Or is it to save one prodigal son? Is Rebekah Brooks keeping her job to buy her silence?
This isn’t going to really affect Rupert Murdoch, is it? If his takeover of BSkyB is postponed but later accepted, the share prices of BSkyB may be significantly reduced therefore being a win/win situation for Rupert. Not to mention that now he’s shut down NOTW, the deal may be more likely as Rupert Murdoch actually owns less of the British media as of Sunday. He’s like Teflon to scandal, it just slips off him.
Having said that, it’s now being rumoured that one of Murdoch’s other publications – The Sun – will be launched on a Sunday. A couple of days ago, someone registered a domain called ‘SunonSunday’ which may be an indication of where this is heading now.
I know my earlier post said hacking, as well as other underhand techniques, were rife in journalism but it doesn’t mean every journalist will undertake such sneaky methods to get a story. My heart goes out to those who’ve been sacrificed to save Rebekah Brooks.