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Murdoch buys the WSJ.

nexuscrawlernexuscrawler Registered User regular
edited August 2007 in Debate and/or Discourse
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/08/01/AR2007080101005.html?hpid=topnews

So I'm sure by now you're aware that Rupert Murdoch's News Corp is merging with Dow Jones Inc giving him control of the Wall Street Journal. This is a huge win for Murdoch and News Corp. The Wall Street Journal has long has a reputation as a conservative news source but it is nearly universally respected for it's thorough and reliable news reporting. The former owners the Bancroft Family was very hands-off and let the management of the paper make the bulk of the decision. Murdoch who has a reputation for being very involved in his news agencies.

The WSJ, despite it's good reputation, has been losing money for years. Will Murdoch try to influence the paper to make it more profitable? If he does will it simply backfire and destroy the WSJ?

nexuscrawler on
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Posts

  • SchrodingerSchrodinger Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    The WSJ, despite it's good reputation, has been losing money for years.

    Irony?

  • FirstComradeStalinFirstComradeStalin Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    The Wall Street Journal has been the second best selling newspaper in the country for a while now behind USA Today, so "jazzing it up" really won't change much. I think newspapers are just a dying breed. Online publications just make more sense.

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  • ElkiElki GOBS OF PUKE!!! YES!!!!!!!Super Moderator, Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited August 2007
    The WSJ, despite it's good reputation, has been losing money for years. Will Murdoch try to influence the paper to make it more profitable? If he does will it simply backfire and destroy the WSJ?

    The Weekly Standard has been losing money since the day it started printing, and has yet to make a profit, but Murdoch keeps propping it; some of the money he spends is just about influence, not immediate profits.

  • ShogunShogun Hair long; money long; me and broke wizards we don't get along Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Please don't ruin the WSJ. Please.

    I don't think I am asking a lot here.

  • geckahngeckahn Registered User
    edited August 2007
    The WSJ, despite it's good reputation, has been losing money for years.

    Irony?

    No. The editorial board sucks massive cock, but the rest of the paper is A+ quality, amongst the best journalism this country has to offer.

    I found this pretty hilarious, in a "we're fucked" kind of way:
    "It’s sad," said a veteran reporter at one of the domestic bureaus, who did not want to be named because of concerns over his career. "We held a wake. We stood around a pile of Journals and drank whiskey."

  • ElkiElki GOBS OF PUKE!!! YES!!!!!!!Super Moderator, Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited August 2007
    What I am saying up there is that the WSJ has a very secure future as a Murdoch tool.

  • nexuscrawlernexuscrawler Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Elkamil wrote: »
    The WSJ, despite it's good reputation, has been losing money for years. Will Murdoch try to influence the paper to make it more profitable? If he does will it simply backfire and destroy the WSJ?

    The Weekly Standard has been losing money since the day it started printing, and has yet to make a profit, but Murdoch keeps propping it; some of the money he spends is just about influence, not immediate profits.

    Likewise The NY Post has been has been a money pit for ages.

    I'm really unsure of Murdoch's motivations. It seems like pure power to him. He owns Fox News but at the same time owns tons of small tabloids that report celebrity crap. His political ideals isn't as apparent as people make it out to be.

  • geckahngeckahn Registered User
    edited August 2007
    Elkamil wrote: »
    What I am saying up there is that the WSJ has a very secure future as a Murdoch tool.

    Unfortunately for the rest of the world. This shit pissed me off so much.

    I guess we can all start reading the Financial Times. FUCK.

  • Psycho Internet HawkPsycho Internet Hawk Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Elkamil wrote: »
    What I am saying up there is that the WSJ has a very secure future as a Murdoch tool.

    It'll be interesting to see how the paper changes over the next decade, whether it can keep up appearances or just turn into Fox News in paper form.

    I'm guessing the latter, unfortunately.

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  • nexuscrawlernexuscrawler Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Elkamil wrote: »
    What I am saying up there is that the WSJ has a very secure future as a Murdoch tool.

    It'll be interesting to see how the paper changes over the next decade, whether it can keep up appearances or just turn into Fox News in paper form.

    I'm guessing the latter, unfortunately.

    Then it would be directly competing with the NY Post, another News Corp holding.

  • geckahngeckahn Registered User
    edited August 2007
    Elkamil wrote: »
    What I am saying up there is that the WSJ has a very secure future as a Murdoch tool.

    It'll be interesting to see how the paper changes over the next decade, whether it can keep up appearances or just turn into Fox News in paper form.

    I'm guessing the latter, unfortunately.

    I'm just hoping he dies like . . . in a week. So his son who runs BskyB can take over. isn't conservative apparently.

    FSABS*H)SWFS)_

  • geckahngeckahn Registered User
    edited August 2007
    Elkamil wrote: »
    What I am saying up there is that the WSJ has a very secure future as a Murdoch tool.

    It'll be interesting to see how the paper changes over the next decade, whether it can keep up appearances or just turn into Fox News in paper form.

    I'm guessing the latter, unfortunately.

    Then it would be directly competing with the NY Post, another News Corp holding.

    It would have to fall wayyy down to start competing with that rag. We can only hope.

  • nexuscrawlernexuscrawler Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Hey he said Fox News in paper form thats what sprang to mind

  • SchrodingerSchrodinger Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    geckahn wrote: »
    The WSJ, despite it's good reputation, has been losing money for years.

    Irony?

    No. The editorial board sucks massive cock, but the rest of the paper is A+ quality, amongst the best journalism this country has to offer.

    I found this pretty hilarious, in a "we're fucked" kind of way:
    "It’s sad," said a veteran reporter at one of the domestic bureaus, who did not want to be named because of concerns over his career. "We held a wake. We stood around a pile of Journals and drank whiskey."

    I'm referring to "irony" as in "publication that caters to financial experts can't figure out how to stay afloat."

  • PodlyPodly good moleman to youRegistered User regular
    edited August 2007
    The WSJ from what I hear and my own cursory glances of the free copies I snag from CBA, has been resting on it's laurels for many years now, and it's professionalism and journalistic integrity has really dropped this decade.

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  • geckahngeckahn Registered User
    edited August 2007
    I'm referring to "irony" as in "publication that caters to financial experts can't figure out how to stay afloat."


    Oh. Right.

    They've been doing better then most though. Plus it was just one part of Dow Jones.

  • Psycho Internet HawkPsycho Internet Hawk Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Podly wrote: »
    The WSJ from what I hear and my own cursory glances of the free copies I snag from CBA, has been resting on it's laurels for many years now, and it's professionalism and journalistic integrity has really dropped this decade.

    They're still a good deal better than most journalism in the nation, and certainly more reliable than the drek Murdoch puts out.

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  • nexuscrawlernexuscrawler Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Honestly the Journal does better corporate muckraking than the Times ever has.

  • FirstComradeStalinFirstComradeStalin Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    My dream in life always involved waking up every morning to my hot wife's oral pleasures, slipping on my slippers that my dog brought me, pouring myself a cup of coffee, then walking outside to get my Wall Street Journal and wave to the neighbor (who I really don't like but deal with anyway because our kids carpool).

    One piece of the puzzle has died now.

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  • Loren MichaelLoren Michael Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    geckahn wrote: »
    No. The editorial board sucks massive cock, but the rest of the paper is A+ quality, amongst the best journalism this country has to offer.

    Friend of a friend who works there sez the shitty part of the paper and the awesome A+++ part of the paper haven't been speaking to each other for a long time.

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  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    I wonder if this will have any impact on their op-ed page, what with his conservative bias...

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  • ZsetrekZsetrek Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Interesting article in the Economist about this a while back.
    Why Murdoch wants the WSJ

    May 3rd 2007 | NEW YORK
    From The Economist print edition
    Is there more to Rupert Murdoch's bid for Dow Jones than an old man's vanity?
    Reuters

    THERE have been mutterings in recent months that Rupert Murdoch is starting to show his age—which, as he has just turned 76, would not be all that surprising. But his friends contend that the media tycoon has always been prone to long, rambling sentences and to repeating himself. If there is an occasional lack of clarity in his explanation of News Corporation's strategy, particularly its embrace of new media through acquisitions such as that of MySpace, a social-networking website, there can be no doubting the excellence of that strategy in practice.

    And if actions speak louder than words, Mr Murdoch's recent behaviour shouts that he is still the bold, innovative big spender, bent on global media domination, that he has always been. On May 1st it emerged that News Corporation had offered $5 billion for Dow Jones, a media firm with assets including the Wall Street Journal and a respected newswire. Although Dow Jones has long suffered from well publicised managerial difficulties, it had been widely assumed that the Bancroft family, which owns a controlling stake through special voting shares, would not sell—not to some johnny-come-lately like Mr Murdoch, at any rate, though perhaps to the owners of the New York Times or Washington Post.

    The family's initial response to Mr Murdoch's bid was no. Investors seemed unimpressed, too: News Corp's share price fell when news of his offer emerged, wiping $3 billion off its market valuation. But Mr Murdoch's audacious bid could yet succeed. At the very least Dow Jones is “in play”—and Mr Murdoch is in a position to scare off most plausible rivals.

    For one thing, his offer is extremely generous. At $60 per ordinary share, it is 65% above the closing price on April 30th, before news of the offer emerged. That values Dow Jones at over 16 times its expected pre-tax profits for 2007, a far higher multiple than other newspaper publishers. That must be tempting to some of the younger descendants of Clarence Barron, the “father of financial journalism”. They will soon be in the majority within the family, and are said to be lobbying their elders to swap shares for Mr Murdoch's cash. (Some 80% of family's votes are opposed to his offer, but this represents only 52% of the total votes, so a small number of defections could tip the balance.)

    Nor, more fundamentally, is the outlook for newspapers particularly good. Indeed, as advertising migrates rapidly to the internet, there have been predictions, including in The Economist (see article), that the paper end of the newspaper industry is destined to suffer a severe pruning. The younger Bancrofts look at the Chandler family's failure to get a good price for the Tribune Company—owner of the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune—which was eventually sold cheaply last month to Sam Zell, a property mogul, and the company's employee share-ownership plan. They conclude that they should grab Mr Murdoch's money before he changes his mind.

    Which raises the $5 billion question: why does Mr Murdoch want Dow Jones? There are two main schools of thought, neither of which suggests that his offer should be viewed as sending a message about the valuations of other newspaper publishers, though their shares mostly jumped at the news of his bid for Dow.

    The first school sees the bid as the latest evidence that Mr Murdoch is one of the few old-media bosses who “gets” new media. Forget the print edition of the Wall Street Journal and focus on its lucrative online edition. Content is king, and the key to success is supplying it through lots of channels, old and new. Look at how News Corp uses websites to generate additional income for its “American Idol” television show. Mr Murdoch is launching a business-television channel in the autumn. All that Dow Jones content would fit right in.
    News he can use, perhaps

    Yet the new business channel is a risky launch that has generated little enthusiasm within News Corp, where it is seen by some top executives as Mr Murdoch's vanity project. He has apparently spotted a lucrative niche for a pro-business channel, much as his Fox News channel found plenty of viewers who prefer its “fair and balanced” coverage of politics to the bleeding liberal hearts of CNN. But CNBC, America's incumbent business channel, is hardly anti-business, and it is far more in tune with what viewers want (namely, accurate information about the things affecting their investments) than CNN was when Mr Murdoch launched Fox. Moreover, Dow Jones has a contract to supply content to CNBC until 2012, by which time the fate of Mr Murdoch's rival channel will surely have been decided.

    That is why the second school tends to dismiss the new-media arguments being offered by News Corp to justify buying Dow Jones as a sop to shareholders who feel that Mr Murdoch's company is over-reliant on newspapers, some of which are underperforming. He finally managed to get rid of one of the most truculent of those shareholders last month by acquiring the stake held by Liberty Media, a conglomerate run by his old friend, turned thorn-in-the-side, John Malone. That freed him to pursue his old dream of owning a global business newspaper.

    Mr Murdoch has long coveted the Wall Street Journal and the Financial Times. In January talks with private-equity firms at the World Economic Forum about a joint bid for Pearson, the owner of the Financial Times (and part owner of The Economist), apparently ran out of steam. So he turned his attention to Dow Jones instead.

    Inevitably, given Mr Murdoch's reputation as a hands-on proprietor, there are fears that he would undermine the editorial independence of the Wall Street Journal's news coverage. But he is certain to understand that excessive interference could tarnish the paper's brand, the value of which comes from having wealthy readers who value honest journalism. Still, should he wish to install a loyalist as editor, he has one on hand in Britain: Robert Thomson, editor of the News Corp-owned Times since leaving the Financial Times after he was passed over for the editorship in 2001.

    Some News Corp shareholders are privately furious about Mr Murdoch's willingness to pay such a high price for what they see as the media equivalent of a trophy wife. Yet if the deal goes ahead, it might turn out better than they fear. There are some synergies between News Corp and Dow Jones, as well as fairly similar cultures. Dow Jones has bungled its international expansion and at the same time failed to cut costs at home. Mr Murdoch may indeed “get” new media, and may have spotted lucrative opportunities within Dow Jones. If so, and if his bid succeeds, it would not be the first time that he has proved his critics wrong.

  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Maybe we'll get lucky, and NewsCorp will get caught in an Enron-style scandal, causing a collapse of the global economy, and plunging the world into another dark age.

    Certainly better than the alternative.

  • JacobkoshJacobkosh Gamble a stamp. I can show you how to be a real man!Super Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited August 2007
    I'd take it over Rupert Murdoch merging with Helios.

    In all seriousness, I'm not sure how this helps anyone involved. Murdoch doesn't seem to realize (or care) that there's still a decent number of old-fashioned non-evangelical Republicans who find him and anything associated with him...distasteful. It's like how my grandparents go to church, but it's a pleasant WASPy church that's more about lawn parties and sipping tea than talking about Jesus per se, and they all sort of look down their noses at the ideologues.

  • HachfaceHachface Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Maybe we'll get lucky, and NewsCorp will get caught in an Enron-style scandal, causing a collapse of the global economy, and plunging the world into another dark age.

    Certainly better than the alternative.

    If they own the Wall Street Journal, who will report the scandal? D:

  • MalkorMalkor Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    He's not going to fuck with the journal. He just wants the name to back up his new business channel.

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  • ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS
    edited August 2007
    Oh no, now they'll just be corporate shills.

    Wait.

  • HachfaceHachface Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Shinto wrote: »
    Oh no, now they'll just be corporate shills.

    Wait.

    The people who write the editorials certainly are corporate shills, but it's my understanding* that the actual reportage of the Wall Street Journal subjects businesses to a high level of scrutiny.

    *I admit to never reading the Wall Street Journal.

    From wikipedia:

    One surprise is the Wall Street Journal, which we find as the most liberal of all 20 news outlets [studied]. We should first remind readers that this estimate (as well as all other newspaper estimates) refers only to the news of the Wall Street Journal; we omitted all data that came from its editorial page. If we included data from the editorial page, surely it would appear more conservative. Second, some anecdotal evidence agrees with our result. For instance, Reed Irvine and Cliff Kincaid (2001) note that "The Journal has had a long-standing separation between its conservative editorial pages and its liberal news pages." Paul Sperry, in an article titled the "Myth of the Conservative Wall Street Journal," notes that the news division of the Journal sometimes calls the editorial division "Nazis." "Fact is," Sperry writes, "the Journal's news and editorial departments are as politically polarized as North and South Korea.

  • Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MASuper Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited August 2007
    I heard some WSJ employee ablooing about the takeover on the radio last night, talking about the collapse of a great institution and the poisonous effect of making profit king. I have to admit to a bit of schadenfreude considering the WSJ has long celebrated even the most venal and destructive actions of any institution with 200 billion pennies to rub together.

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  • GorakGorak Registered User
    edited August 2007
    I heard he said he'd have the same hands-off style as when he bought the Times (London).

    Now it basically prints the same as Murdoch's tabloid rags do but just uses longer words.

  • Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MASuper Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited August 2007
    Gorak wrote: »
    I heard he said he'd have the same hands-off style as when he bought the Times (London).

    Now it basically prints the same as Murdoch's tabloid rags do but just uses longer words.

    He also talked about eliminating the print version of the WSJ. Basically, he's said a lot of shit, and he definitely intends to trade on the name in his other news holdings.

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  • Loren MichaelLoren Michael Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    PEOPLEFOLK. THERE ARE LIKE, TWO DIFFERENT WALL STREET JOURNALS.

    The editorial page is seriously shitty, the news content is seriously good shit.

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  • GorakGorak Registered User
    edited August 2007
    PEOPLEFOLK. THERE ARE LIKE, TWO DIFFERENT WALL STREET JOURNALS.

    The editorial page is seriously shitty, the news content is seriously good shit.

    And Murdoch will balance that out by bringing the journalism down to the level of the editorial.

  • nexuscrawlernexuscrawler Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    People tend to think the WSJ is conservative because of it's editorial pages and it's focus on business. However even a cursory glace at thier reporting on business it's hardly ultra conservative. In fact they do more business muckracking than just about anybody else. There's also a strong focus on the human effects of various business practices. It's hardly the PROFIT PROFIT FREE MARKET! mentality people make it out to be.

  • Psycho Internet HawkPsycho Internet Hawk Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    People tend to think the WSJ is conservative because of it's editorial pages and it's focus on business. However even a cursory glace at thier reporting on business it's hardly ultra conservative. In fact they do more business muckracking than just about anybody else. There's also a strong focus on the human effects of various business practices. It's hardly the PROFIT PROFIT FREE MARKET! mentality people make it out to be.

    Depends. They're great at muckraking if it's related to the economy, like, say, Enron-type stuff. Things like corperate raping of the environment, not so much.

    At least, that's always the impression I got, but then, I usually read the NY Times or Boston Globe instead.

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  • Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MASuper Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited August 2007
    I just can't get into the Globe. I used to read the Washington Post when I lived in DC, and then switched to the online Times before they locked down the content. Now I mostly just get news from wherever I can find it on the web. The only paper I really read with any regularity is the Dig, the Boston indie rag that David Thorpe writes for.

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  • Target PracticeTarget Practice Registered User
    edited August 2007
    Jacobkosh wrote: »
    I'd take it over Rupert Murdoch merging with Helios.
    That's why you kill him and let the Illuminati take over.

    Anyway, I can't say I've a fan of the Journal, but media consolidation is never a good thing, and certainly not when it involves Rupert Murdoch.

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  • geckahngeckahn Registered User
    edited August 2007
    Shinto wrote: »
    Oh no, now they'll just be corporate shills.

    Wait.

    You don't read the WSJ. Probably ever.


    This whole event saddens me deeply. FUCK YOU BANCROFT FAMILY.

  • ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS
    edited August 2007
    geckahn wrote: »
    Shinto wrote: »
    Oh no, now they'll just be corporate shills.

    Wait.

    You don't read the WSJ. Probably ever.

    It's true. And yet I am relatively well informed.

    So, I anticipate very little problem.

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