By Nicholas Wong
The global media isn’t exactly extolling Rupert Murdoch’s virtues right now. The Leveson Inquiry is basically ripping him a new one. He still, however, manages to find the time to add a little extra controversy to the blogosphere.
Murdoch, in a series of comments about the future of journalism, threw a snide backhanded comment at The Huffington Post. He accused the online news website of having grown “mainly just stealing stories from existing newspapers.” This was in relation to his view that the internet was a tremendous source of information, it did not add to a diversity of it.
News blog Politico, added that while the Huffington Post’s aggregation practices have been criticised and are often notorious, there is a flipside. “The Huffington Post masthead lists 45 reporters, and that does not include the many editors and analysts who also contribute original reporting.”
Executive editor of the Huffington Post, Tim O’brien, responded in a open letter to Rupert Murdoch. “I know that Rupert’s having a hard time remembering everything these days — as the Leveson inquiry shows — but we are busily and happily employing and deploying over 400 journalists, and we recently won a Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting, so I’d like to invite him to drop by our newsroom sometime for a visit,” he said.
It is depressing to know that the man who controls an almost monopoly share of the worlds news intake would employ a middle-school sort of popularity tactic to drag others down with him. Everyone loves a little bit of iconoclasm, the downfall of The News of the World being as such. But Rupert Murdoch’s behaviour can only be described as child-like. Claiming obliviousness to the phone-hacking scandal seems like a cop-out. Thankfully this is an instance in which the justice system isn’t letting someone get by on a cheap excuse.
Was there ever a point where Rupert Murdoch was ‘a fit person’ to run an international company?