Posts tagged with ‘Rupert Murdoch’

News Corp’s Cash Tax Rate: -46.1 percent
A negative tax rate? What does that mean?
Take it away Reuters:

Over the past four years Murdoch’s U.S.-based News Corp. has made money on income taxes. Having earned $10.4 billion in profits, News Corp. would have been expected to pay $3.6 billion at the 35 percent corporate tax rate. Instead, it actually collected $4.8 billion in income tax refunds, all or nearly all from the U.S. government.
The relevant figure is the cash paid tax rate. This is the net amount of corporate income taxes actually paid after refunds. For those four years, it was minus 46 percent, disclosure statements show.
Even on an accounting basis, which measures taxes incurred but often not actually paid for years, News Corp. had a tax rate of under 20 percent, little more than half the 35 percent statutory rate, company disclosures examined by Reuters show. News Corp. had no comment.

It pays to be the king.
Update: Reuters has withdrawn this article due to faulty reporting. Our correction is here.

News Corp’s Cash Tax Rate: -46.1 percent

A negative tax rate? What does that mean?

Take it away Reuters:

Over the past four years Murdoch’s U.S.-based News Corp. has made money on income taxes. Having earned $10.4 billion in profits, News Corp. would have been expected to pay $3.6 billion at the 35 percent corporate tax rate. Instead, it actually collected $4.8 billion in income tax refunds, all or nearly all from the U.S. government.

The relevant figure is the cash paid tax rate. This is the net amount of corporate income taxes actually paid after refunds. For those four years, it was minus 46 percent, disclosure statements show.

Even on an accounting basis, which measures taxes incurred but often not actually paid for years, News Corp. had a tax rate of under 20 percent, little more than half the 35 percent statutory rate, company disclosures examined by Reuters show. News Corp. had no comment.

It pays to be the king.

Update: Reuters has withdrawn this article due to faulty reporting. Our correction is here.

Today marks the marks the end of the 168-year-old News of the World, the English-speaking world’s largest circulation newspaper. A scandal where journalists and hired investigators hacked the phones of politicians, celebrities and ordinary citizens in order to scoop the latest tabloid sensation is its final legacy.
The Guardian bids them adieu in a Sunday editorial:

Suddenly, Rupert Murdoch seems much less a global mogul, much more a diminished man of glass. He flies into London this weekend from Sun Valley, Idaho, in time for the last rites of the most successful Sunday newspaper in Britain, the News of the World. One hundred and sixty-eight years ago, it pledged: “Our motto is the truth, our practice is fearless advocacy of the truth.” After today, the tabloid will appear no more, felled not by one royal rogue reporter but by the arrogance, ambition and apparent tolerance of systemic criminal behaviour by members of the senior News International management…
…The senior management at News International were abject in their failure – through lack of insight or enthusiasm – to get to the root of the problem. They failed their victims, they failed their journalists and they failed the News of the World.  

The Guardian, Murdoch’s malign influence must die with the News of the World.

Today marks the marks the end of the 168-year-old News of the World, the English-speaking world’s largest circulation newspaper. A scandal where journalists and hired investigators hacked the phones of politicians, celebrities and ordinary citizens in order to scoop the latest tabloid sensation is its final legacy.

The Guardian bids them adieu in a Sunday editorial:

Suddenly, Rupert Murdoch seems much less a global mogul, much more a diminished man of glass. He flies into London this weekend from Sun Valley, Idaho, in time for the last rites of the most successful Sunday newspaper in Britain, the News of the World. One hundred and sixty-eight years ago, it pledged: “Our motto is the truth, our practice is fearless advocacy of the truth.” After today, the tabloid will appear no more, felled not by one royal rogue reporter but by the arrogance, ambition and apparent tolerance of systemic criminal behaviour by members of the senior News International management

…The senior management at News International were abject in their failure – through lack of insight or enthusiasm – to get to the root of the problem. They failed their victims, they failed their journalists and they failed the News of the World.  

The Guardian, Murdoch’s malign influence must die with the News of the World.

Police Suspect News International Deleting Millions of Emails →

Via the Guardian:

Police are investigating evidence that a News International executive may have deleted millions of emails from an internal archive, in an apparent attempt to obstruct Scotland Yard’s inquiry into the phone-hacking scandal.

The archive is believed to have reached back to January 2005 revealing daily contact between News of the World editors, reporters and outsiders, including private investigators. The messages are potentially highly valuable both for the police and for the numerous public figures who are suing News International.

According to legal sources close to the police inquiry, a senior executive is believed to have deleted ‘massive quantities’ of the archive on two separate occasions, leaving only a small fraction to be disclosed. One of the alleged deletions is said to have been made at the end of January this year, just as Scotland Yard was launching Operation Weeting, its new inquiry into the affair.

The allegation directly contradicts repeated claims from News International that it is co-operating fully with police in order to expose its history of illegal news-gathering. It is likely to be seen as evidence that the company could not pass a ‘fit and proper person’ test for its proposed purchase of BSkyB.

Takeaway: Things can always get worse.

Time Once Was: News of the World circa 1870
The Financial Times has an interesting video analyzing the paper’s closing and its wider implications.
Photo: Via BBC In Pictures.

Time Once Was: News of the World circa 1870

The Financial Times has an interesting video analyzing the paper’s closing and its wider implications.

Photo: Via BBC In Pictures.

Amid Scandal, News Corp Shutters News of the World →

James Murdoch, Deputy Chief Operating Officer, News Corporation, and Chairman, News International in an announcement to staff today.

Via Adweek:

You do not need to be told that The News of the World is 168 years old. That it is read by more people than any other English language newspaper. That it has enjoyed support from Britain’s largest advertisers. And that it has a proud history of fighting crime, exposing wrong-doing and regularly setting the news agenda for the nation…

The good things the News of the World does, however, have been sullied by behaviour that was wrong. Indeed, if recent allegations are true, it was inhuman and has no place in our Company.

The News of the World is in the business of holding others to account. But it failed when it came to itself…

Having consulted senior colleagues, I have decided that we must take further decisive action with respect to the paper.

This Sunday will be the last issue of the News of the World.
That media likes to talk about media is nothing new, unless of course the media has done something very wrong and would like everyone to look the other way.
Such is the case in the ongoing phone tapping scandal in which UK tabloids hired private investigators to eavesdrop on the calls of celebrities, politicians, the families of slain soldiers and even the family of a missing girl.
Writing in the the Spectator, Peter Osborne notes that News International, the Rupert Murdoch-owned company whose papers are at the center of the scandal, is attempting to keep a lid on coverage by flexing its political muscle and simply not reporting it in its papers.
As Osborne notes, News International owns the Times, the Sunday Times, the News of the World and the Sun: a full third of the domestic newspaper market.
In this graphic, he shows the number of times each newspaper is known to have eavesdropped, and the number of subsequent articles they’ve written about the scandal.
Not reporting the news, of course, isn’t limited to England. Earlier this year NBC was taken to task when its news division remained silent amid reports that its parent company GE did not pay corporate taxes.
Update: Via SoupSoup - “News Corporation will close its tabloid News of the World after this Sunday’s edition, as a result of an escalating phone hacking scandal, James Murdoch said on Thursday.”

That media likes to talk about media is nothing new, unless of course the media has done something very wrong and would like everyone to look the other way.

Such is the case in the ongoing phone tapping scandal in which UK tabloids hired private investigators to eavesdrop on the calls of celebrities, politicians, the families of slain soldiers and even the family of a missing girl.

Writing in the the Spectator, Peter Osborne notes that News International, the Rupert Murdoch-owned company whose papers are at the center of the scandal, is attempting to keep a lid on coverage by flexing its political muscle and simply not reporting it in its papers.

As Osborne notes, News International owns the Times, the Sunday Times, the News of the World and the Sun: a full third of the domestic newspaper market.

In this graphic, he shows the number of times each newspaper is known to have eavesdropped, and the number of subsequent articles they’ve written about the scandal.

Not reporting the news, of course, isn’t limited to England. Earlier this year NBC was taken to task when its news division remained silent amid reports that its parent company GE did not pay corporate taxes.

Update: Via SoupSoup - “News Corporation will close its tabloid News of the World after this Sunday’s edition, as a result of an escalating phone hacking scandal, James Murdoch said on Thursday.”

A furor has been building in England for months after disclosures that journalists from The News of the World, a mass-circulation Sunday tabloid, hacked into the voice-mail messages of celebrities and other prominent people. But, this week, the extent of the alleged hacking has broadened dramatically with reports that the newspaper hacked the cellphone of a 13-year-old girl who was abducted and murdered in 2002, when Ms. Brooks was its editor.

Additionally, Scotland Yard detectives were also investigating whether the phones of some families of victims of the bombings of three London subway trains and a double-decker bus in July 2005 had also been hacked, according to relatives of the dead.

“We are no longer talking here about politicians and celebrities, we are talking about murder victims, potentially terrorist victims, having their phones hacked into,” Mr. Cameron told Parliament. “It is absolutely disgusting, what has taken place, and I think everyone in this House and indeed this country will be revolted by what they have heard and what they have seen on their television screens.”

The New York Times, “Hacking Scandal Draws In British Government.”

This story gets more and more sickening.

(via inothernews) Stay classy, Murdoch

 New York Post Blocks iPad Access Via Safari To Sell Subscriptions

It must have sounded like a great idea to someone at News Corp (NSDQ: NWS) at the time: “Hey, I know how we can sell more subscriptions through the New York Post iPad App! Let’s block access through iPad Safari and make them go to the app instead.” What they should have heard: “Hey, let’s make our editorial content as inaccessible and irrelevant as possible and send iPad users to other options. Oh, and at the same time, let’s take three giant steps back.”
Even better, apparently no one there noticed or cared that users of other iPad browsers like Skyfire and Opera Mini can slip right in. 

- Staci Kramer, PaidContent

 New York Post Blocks iPad Access Via Safari To Sell Subscriptions

It must have sounded like a great idea to someone at News Corp (NSDQ: NWS) at the time: “Hey, I know how we can sell more subscriptions through the New York Post iPad App! Let’s block access through iPad Safari and make them go to the app instead.” What they should have heard: “Hey, let’s make our editorial content as inaccessible and irrelevant as possible and send iPad users to other options. Oh, and at the same time, let’s take three giant steps back.”

Even better, apparently no one there noticed or cared that users of other iPad browsers like Skyfire and Opera Mini can slip right in. 

- Staci Kramer, PaidContent

Ethics 101 teaches journalists a few things about what they should and shouldn’t do. Somewhere near the top is that you can’t hack into people’s phones to poach their voicemails. It’s not just unethical, but illegal too.
Evidently, Rupert Murdoch’s News of the World never got the message.
Yesterday, a third journalist from England’s largest paper was arrested “on suspicion of unlawfully intercepting mobile phone voice mail messages.”
The story begins back in 2005 when, according to a September 2010 New York Times Magazine cover story:

[T]hree senior aides to Britain’s royal family noticed odd things happening on their mobile phones. Messages they had never listened to were somehow appearing in their mailboxes as if heard and saved. Equally peculiar were stories that began appearing about Prince William in one of the country’s biggest tabloids, News of the World.

As the Times Magazine told it, phone hacking was part of News of the World’s get the story at any cost culture with editors looking on at the practice with a nod and a wink.
The ethics are easy on this: tabloid gossip aside, you don’t invade celebrity privacy to generate scandal.
But what if you’ve larger fish to fry? Listen to what The Guardian’s Ian Reeves wrote in 2006:

I’ve used some of those questionable methods myself over the years. I, too, once listened to the mobile phone messages of a corrupt arms company executive - the crime similar to that for which Goodman now faces the prospect of jail…
…But unlike Goodman, I was not interested in witless tittle-tattle about the royal family. I was looking for evidence of bribery and corruption. And unlike the News of the World, I was not paying a private detective to routinely help me with circulation-boosting snippets. That is my defence, when I try to explain newspaper methods to my current university journalism students, and some of whom are rather shocked.

Are these techniques legitimate then if an intrepid journalist is trying to uncover malfeasance and corruption? Or does it give journalists authoritative powers never intended for them?
Over at the BBC, media critic Torin Douglas sympathizes with bending the law if it’s in the public interest but notes that English law doesn’t. “There is no public interest defense,” a lawyer tells him.
Besides, journalists aren’t an infallible bunch. Some have been known to get the story wrong in quite dramatic ways.

Ethics 101 teaches journalists a few things about what they should and shouldn’t do. Somewhere near the top is that you can’t hack into people’s phones to poach their voicemails. It’s not just unethical, but illegal too.

Evidently, Rupert Murdoch’s News of the World never got the message.

Yesterday, a third journalist from England’s largest paper was arrested “on suspicion of unlawfully intercepting mobile phone voice mail messages.”

The story begins back in 2005 when, according to a September 2010 New York Times Magazine cover story:

[T]hree senior aides to Britain’s royal family noticed odd things happening on their mobile phones. Messages they had never listened to were somehow appearing in their mailboxes as if heard and saved. Equally peculiar were stories that began appearing about Prince William in one of the country’s biggest tabloids, News of the World.

As the Times Magazine told it, phone hacking was part of News of the World’s get the story at any cost culture with editors looking on at the practice with a nod and a wink.

The ethics are easy on this: tabloid gossip aside, you don’t invade celebrity privacy to generate scandal.

But what if you’ve larger fish to fry? Listen to what The Guardian’s Ian Reeves wrote in 2006:

I’ve used some of those questionable methods myself over the years. I, too, once listened to the mobile phone messages of a corrupt arms company executive - the crime similar to that for which Goodman now faces the prospect of jail…

…But unlike Goodman, I was not interested in witless tittle-tattle about the royal family. I was looking for evidence of bribery and corruption. And unlike the News of the World, I was not paying a private detective to routinely help me with circulation-boosting snippets. That is my defence, when I try to explain newspaper methods to my current university journalism students, and some of whom are rather shocked.

Are these techniques legitimate then if an intrepid journalist is trying to uncover malfeasance and corruption? Or does it give journalists authoritative powers never intended for them?

Over at the BBC, media critic Torin Douglas sympathizes with bending the law if it’s in the public interest but notes that English law doesn’t. “There is no public interest defense,” a lawyer tells him.

Besides, journalists aren’t an infallible bunch. Some have been known to get the story wrong in quite dramatic ways.

We share a belief that the Holocaust, of course, can and should be discussed appropriately in the media. But that is not what we have seen at Fox News. It is not appropriate to accuse a 14-year-old Jew hiding with a Christian family in Nazi-occupied Hungary of sending his people to death camps. It is not appropriate to call executives of another news agency “Nazis.” And it is not appropriate to make literally hundreds of on-air references to the Holocaust and Nazis when characterizing people with whom you disagree.

It is because this issue has a profound impact on each of us, our families and our communities that we are calling on Fox News to meet the standard it has set for itself: “to exercise the ultimate sensitivity when referencing the Holocaust.”

We respectfully request that Glenn Beck be sanctioned by Fox News for his completely unacceptable attacks on a survivor of the Holocaust and that Roger Ailes apologize for his dismissive remarks about rabbis’ sensitivity tohow the Holocaust is used on the air.

The Jewish Funds for Justice, a non-profit group, took out a full page ad today in News Corp’s Wall Street Journal to criticize the use of Holocaust and Nazi terminology by News Corp’s Fox News commentators to label those with whom they disagree. The letter is addressed to Rupert Murdoch and signed by 400 leaders of the Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist movements as well as Orthodox rabbis.

UpdateFox news responds:

In a statement provided to The Cutline, Joel Cheatwood, senior vice president of development for Fox News, said: “We haven’t seen the ad, but this group is a George Soros backed left-wing political organization that has been trying to engage Glenn Beck primarily for publicity purposes.

Rupert's Daily Delayed →

Plans to unveil the iPad newspaper next Wednesday at San Francisco’s Museum of Modern Art have been postponed.

It appears the issue isn’t with the iPad thingy, but instead with the implementation of a ‘push’ subscription feature in the iTunes store.

Sometimes Rupert wins, sometimes he loses… spectacularly.
MediaWeek put together this chart of Rupert fail (PDF).
As Techdirt notes:

The downfall in almost every case is about Murdoch focusing on using the internet as mainly a broadcast medium, rather than a communications medium. Delphi was all about community… and then News Corp. tried to turn it into a place to sell his magazines and newspapers. Fox Interactive was all about pushing content, and had little community. MySpace, of all things, which was really about community from the beginning, has completely faltered under News Corps’ control, because they tried to focus on using it to sell music and stopped investing in any sort of real community features — as services like Facebook and Twitter totally leapfrogged them on that front. It’s the same story over and over again, and given that The Daily is so focused on platform, rather than users, it seems likely to be a repeat of the same mistake all over again.

Sometimes Rupert wins, sometimes he loses… spectacularly.

MediaWeek put together this chart of Rupert fail (PDF).

As Techdirt notes:

The downfall in almost every case is about Murdoch focusing on using the internet as mainly a broadcast medium, rather than a communications medium. Delphi was all about community… and then News Corp. tried to turn it into a place to sell his magazines and newspapers. Fox Interactive was all about pushing content, and had little community. MySpace, of all things, which was really about community from the beginning, has completely faltered under News Corps’ control, because they tried to focus on using it to sell music and stopped investing in any sort of real community features — as services like Facebook and Twitter totally leapfrogged them on that front. It’s the same story over and over again, and given that The Daily is so focused on platform, rather than users, it seems likely to be a repeat of the same mistake all over again.

Richard Branson will be announcing Virgin’s new iPad-only magazine today in New York. Called Project, Branson believes it will be “a paperless ‘revolutionary multimedia’ publication.”

Others could call it a nice vanity piece that will compete with Rupert Murdoch’s similarly planned iPad-only magazine.

Project will focus on entertainment, design, business, travel and international culture and be run by Branson’s daughter Holly.