Part 1 - RUPERT
D. J. Ken - National Radio Text Service
Outfoxed examines how media empires, led by Rupert Murdoch's Fox News, have been running a "race to the bottom" in television news. This film takes an in-depth look at Fox News and the dangers of ever-enlarging corporations taking control of the public's right to know. Meta House - CONTESTANTS FLEE SABAY CONTEST - NGO's STRANGE BEDFELLOWS
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Sunday September 04, 2011
THE FACE OF FOX & STAR TV BOSS RUPERT MURDOCH @ META HOUSE
To some he's an enigma to other he's a ruthless tyrant that owns numerous scandalous sensationalized publications. The 80-year-old media tycoon was born in Australia during its apartheid era. His publications reflect his background in his balls to the wall style at any cost regardless if it defames anyone or is factual. That all came to light in July 2011 when Rupert Murdoch faced allegations that his companies including the News of the World, owned by News Corporation, had been regularly hacking the phones of private citizens. He also faces police and government investigations into bribery and corruption in the UK and FBI investigations in the US.
In 1953, Murdoch became managing director of News Limited, inherited from his father. He acquired troubled newspapers in Australia and New Zealand during the 1950s and '60s before expanding into the UK in 1969, taking over the News of the World and then the The Sun, which he built into Britain's best selling daily. He moved to New York in 1974 and expanded into the US market, and in 1985 he became a US citizen. In 1981, he bought The Times, his first British broadsheet. In 1986, keen to adopt newer electronic publishing technologies, he consolidated his UK printing operations in Wapping, causing bitter industrial disputes. His News Corporation acquired Twentieth Century Fox (1985), HarperCollins (1989) and The Wall Street Journal (2007). He formed BSkyB in 1990 and during the 1990s expanded into Asian networks and South American television. By 2000 Murdoch's News Corporation owned over 800 companies in more than 50 countries with a net worth of over $5 billion.
Murdoch along with his son James gave testimony before a British parliamentary committee regarding phone hacking. In the U.K his media empire remains under fire as investigators continue to probe reports of other phone hacking.
On 14 July, the Culture, Media and Sport Committee of the House of Commons served a summons on Murdoch, his son James, and his former CEO Rebekah Brooks to testify before a committee on 19 July. After an initial refusal, the Murdochs confirmed they would attend after the committee issued them a summons to Parliament. The day before the committee, the website of the News Corporation publication The Sun was hacked, and a bogus story was posted on the front page claiming that Murdoch had died. Murdoch described the day of the committee "the most humble day of my life". He argued that since he ran a global business of 53,000 employees and that the News of the World was "just 1%" of this; he was not ultimately responsible for what went on at the tabloid. He added that he had not considered resigning, and that he and the other top executives had been completely unaware of the hacking.
On 15 July Murdoch attended a private meeting in London with the family of Milly Dowler, where he personally apologized for the hacking of their murdered daughter's voicemail by a company he owns. On 16 and 17 July, News International published two full-page apologies in many of Britain's national newspapers. The first apology took the form of a letter, signed by Rupert Murdoch, in which he said sorry for the "serious wrongdoing" that occurred. The second was titled "Putting right what's gone wrong", and gave more detail about the steps News International was taking to address the public's concerns. In the wake of the allegations Murdoch accepted the resignations of Rebekah Brooks, head of Murdoch's British operations, and Les Hinton, head of The Wall Street Journal who was chairman of Murdoch's British newspaper division when some of the abuses happened. They both deny any knowledge of any wrong-doing under their command.
Murdoch has shut down New of The World but his other business and personal life is also a cluttered mess of mistakes and devious behavior. He wants the public to pay for the news they currently receive free on the Internet. The whistle blower of the wire tapes was murdered soon after the investigations began. The depth of Murdoch's life would take a 10 part TV series. What will this documentary revealů? The answer to that is to go see it tonight at 7 PM at the Meta House.
A monthly schedule of Meta House screenings is available at the Meta House. A schedule on the film presented on the current day is available at their web site.
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