STEVE CHIOTAKIS: Democratic Senator Jay Rockefeller is now calling for a U.S. investigation to see if there was any phone hacking done here by Rupert Murdoch’s U.S. media holdings — the Wall Street Journal, Fox News Channel and the New York Post.
Meanwhile, in London, the British parliament is expected to unite in calling for Murdoch to drop his bid to to buy the biggest TV network in the U.K.
Marketplace’s Stephen Beard is with us live from London with the latest. Hi Stephen.
STEPHEN BEARD: Hello Steve.
CHIOTAKIS: It seems like everyday, this story just gets bigger and bigger.
BEARD: It’s almost Shakespearean what’s happened to Murdoch. “When sorrows come, they come not single spies but in battalions.” Its share prices slumped. He’s had to shut down one of his most profitable British newspapers. And today, as you say, he faces this unprecedented move by a U.K. parliament. The usually only happens in war time. All the main parties will unite to condemn News Corp. and call on Murdoch to drop his bid for BSkyB, the countries biggest commercial TV company. It’s the speed of Murdoch’s fall from grace that’s so amazing.
Roy Greenslade of City University says it’s almost akin to the Arab Spring.
ROY GREENSLADE: Within a week, rather like an Arab potentate, he’s been dislodged and demonized, and the result is almost a kind of revolution against him and a revolution against the kind of media he stands for.
CHIOTAKIS: You know, Stephen, how much will this damage his company, and Rupert Murdoch specifically?
BEARD: Well, his hold on power has certainly been very severely shaken. News Corp. share prices have fallen 14 percent because of this crisis. And it’s emerged that News Corps.’s planning to spend $5 billion propping up its own share price.
CHIOTAKIS: Wow. All right, Marketplace’s Stephen Beard, reporting from London today. Stephen thanks.
BEARD: OK Steve.
JEREMY HOBSON: The chances that Rupert Murdoch’s media company will take over British Sky Broadcasting is looking less and less likely. Now, British Prime Minister David Cameron’s conservative party has come out against the deal following the widely reported phone hacking scandal at News of the World. Now a Democratic U.S. Senator is calling for an investigation here in this country where News Corporation owns media properties including the Wall Street Journal, Fox News Channel and the New York Post
Marketplace’s Stephen Beard reports.
STEPHEN BEARD: Jay Rockefeller, chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, says the phone hacking allegations reported in Britain are offensive and a serious breech of journalistic ethics. He wants the U.S. authorities to investigate whether or not anything similar has been happening in America. Rockefeller expressed concern that Murdoch’s New Corp. may have hacked into the cell phones of American targets, including the victims of 9/11.
Roy Greenslade is professor of journalism at City University in London.
ROY GREENSLADE: This is a mighty serious matter for the whole conglomerate. The stain of the hacking scandal is spreading across the whole Murdoch empire.
It’s emerged that New Corp. has spent $5 billion propping up its own shares. The News Corp. share prices has fallen 14 percent since the phone hacking crisis blew up last week.
In London, I’m Stephen Beard for Marketplace.
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