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October 21, 2011

News Corp. pays off phone-hacking scandal victim’s family

  • $3.2 million the settlement headed to Milly Dowler’s family, via News Corp.
  • $1.6 million the settlement headed to a charity of the Dowler family’s choosing source

» The scandal that killed a newspaper: With the News of the World scandal a bit of a low point for the company this year, it’s understandable that they might want to get this dealt with. But the Dowler family has made sure it was to their liking: ”Nothing that has been agreed will ever bring back Milly or undo the traumas of her disappearance and the horrendous murder trial earlier this year,” they said. “The only way that a fitting tribute could be agreed was to ensure that a very substantial donation to charity was made in Milly’s memory. We hope that projects will be undertaken so that some good can come from this.” Meanwhile, News Corp. now has a second scandal under its large journalistic umbrella, though this one (the WSJ’s circulation scandal) is fortunately more business-oriented and less invasive on another person’s life.

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11:05 // 2 years ago
October 9, 2011

The Simpsons gets a longer lifespan, but the voice actors lose out

  • whoo-hoo After a few weeks of tense negotiations with the show’s voice actors, “The Simpsons” will have two more full seasons before it finally goes into syndication heaven — making for 25 full years.
  • d’oh The negotiations centered on a fight over giving the voice actors back-end profits, which appears to be something they weren’t able to get. Also, fans of the show may just want to see it end. source
11:17 // 2 years ago
October 5, 2011

Three fairly edgy things Roger Ailes said in his AP interview

  • one On networks that criticize Fox News: “Everybody who’s getting their ass beat vilifies the opponent. This is the first rule of fighting.” Boom.
  • two On an anchor he thinks does it wrong: ”Wolf Blitzer is an excellent reporter, but he’s not a star.” He says his back is to the camera too much.
  • three And the coup de grace, on one of his most notable hires: “I hired Sarah Palin because she was hot and got ratings.” Whew. source

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10:53 // 2 years ago

Will “The Simpsons” end due to a salary fight? Quite possibly, kids.

  • what “The Simpsons” is facing some significant budgetary issues, and Fox is trying to figure out a way to cut costs so the show remains profitable. If it can’t, the 23-year-old show, which predates every other scripted show on the prime-time schedule, will face cancellation.
  • why The big problem is that the voice actors on the show, who fought for higher wages (and won) many times, are being asked to take significant cuts in salary (they make $8 million per year), which they’re fighting. Also, it probably doesn’t help that ratings are down. source

» Putting the D’oh out to pasture? The Simpsons is still widely-regarded, but with roughly 500 episodes under its belt, Fox may be ready for the next step in the “Simpsons” phenomenon — its own cable network. It’d be interesting if the salary battle is really an excuse to end “The Simpsons” outright.

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10:18 // 2 years ago
September 20, 2011
Ted Turner: Rupert Murdoch may have to resign from News Corp.
From one rich mogul to another: Former Turner Broadcasting owner Ted Turner, who knows a thing or two about running his mouth, says that Murdoch has made tactical errors in his handling of the phone-hacking scandal, including his claim that he didn’t know anything about the hacking. “Well, he should have known,” Turner said. “He was chairman of the board. He’s responsible. I took responsibility when I ran my company. You never heard me say, ‘Well, I didn’t know.’” The two moguls once famously feuded, after Turner claimed Murdoch’s media outlets (including Fox News, a direct rival to the Turner-founded CNN) were largely behind the Iraq war, because it helped his company. Turner says they eventually buried the hatchet, however, after he bought Rupert a bison burger and praised the Wall Street Journal. Well, this may perhaps change that situation once again. Heh. source
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From one rich mogul to another: Former Turner Broadcasting owner Ted Turner, who knows a thing or two about running his mouth, says that Murdoch has made tactical errors in his handling of the phone-hacking scandal, including his claim that he didn’t know anything about the hacking. “Well, he should have known,” Turner said. “He was chairman of the board. He’s responsible. I took responsibility when I ran my company. You never heard me say, ‘Well, I didn’t know.’” The two moguls once famously feuded, after Turner claimed Murdoch’s media outlets (including Fox News, a direct rival to the Turner-founded CNN) were largely behind the Iraq war, because it helped his company. Turner says they eventually buried the hatchet, however, after he bought Rupert a bison burger and praised the Wall Street Journal. Well, this may perhaps change that situation once again. Heh. source

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11:14 // 2 years ago
September 17, 2011
Fox considering creating an all-Simpsons cable network
They certainly have enough episodes to pull it off. One of News Corp.’s greatest pieces of entertainment could eventually become a franchise all its own. With the series likely to pass the 500-episode mark with its upcoming 23rd season, Fox is reportedly talking about a long-term plan for the franchise, involving a cable network of its own. Obviously, they wouldn’t be able to do this right away — most of the series is embedded in long-term syndication deals — but once those expire, a single network approach might prove to be more financially sound as the series reaches its point of quarter-life crisis. So how would this work, anyway? Let’s do a quick number breakdown:
245 length, in hours, of the series’ current 486 episodes, plus “The Simpsons Movie,” with commercials
10.2 number of days that would manage to fill up, including commercials, before you’d run into a show repeat
35.7 number of times the network would cycle through every single episode, plus a movie, in a single year source
» So, what do you guys think? Is a network built around a single show, even one as diverse and far-reaching as “The Simpsons,” something you’d watch? Or would it be like the original MTV — where everyone loved the idea of it, but didn’t necessarily stick with it? We’re not sure, but there are probably some pretty killer OWN Network jokes they could make if Fox did this.
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They certainly have enough episodes to pull it off. One of News Corp.’s greatest pieces of entertainment could eventually become a franchise all its own. With the series likely to pass the 500-episode mark with its upcoming 23rd season, Fox is reportedly talking about a long-term plan for the franchise, involving a cable network of its own. Obviously, they wouldn’t be able to do this right away — most of the series is embedded in long-term syndication deals — but once those expire, a single network approach might prove to be more financially sound as the series reaches its point of quarter-life crisis. So how would this work, anyway? Let’s do a quick number breakdown:

  • 245 length, in hours, of the series’ current 486 episodes, plus “The Simpsons Movie,” with commercials
  • 10.2 number of days that would manage to fill up, including commercials, before you’d run into a show repeat
  • 35.7 number of times the network would cycle through every single episode, plus a movie, in a single year source

» So, what do you guys think? Is a network built around a single show, even one as diverse and far-reaching as “The Simpsons,” something you’d watch? Or would it be like the original MTV — where everyone loved the idea of it, but didn’t necessarily stick with it? We’re not sure, but there are probably some pretty killer OWN Network jokes they could make if Fox did this.

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12:18 // 2 years ago
September 4, 2011
In light of the current controversy surrounding News of the World, I have declined the bonus that the company chose to award to me. While the financial and operating performance metrics on which the bonus decision was based are not associated with this matter, I feel that declining the bonus is the right thing to do.
James Murdoch • Explaining his reasons for not accepting a $6 million bonus from News Corp. in the wake of the News of the World scandal. Accepting the bonus would have increased his 2010 take-home pay by 74 percent. His dad Rupert, meanwhile, accepted a $12.5 million bonus of his own. Do you think James made the right move? And if so, should Rupert Murdoch have followed the same track? source (viafollow)
16:10 // 2 years ago
August 16, 2011

New evidence might really hurt the Murdochs’ testimony

  • thenJames Murdoch pleaded ignorance when he went in front of Parliament last month as part of the phone hacking scandal that felled News of the World. Though it kinda seemed unlikely that Murdoch would know nothing of the phone hackings, there was no evidence against him.
  • nowThe law firm that previously represented News International has begun testifying against them — labeling their testimony as having “serious innaccuracies.” Murdoch might be questioned again, and he’ll have new evidence and testimony to answer for. source

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15:55 // 2 years ago
July 29, 2011
16:06 // 2 years ago
July 20, 2011

Thought of the day: They have more fun raggin’ on world leaders on the other side of the pond. As for the clip itself, Cameron makes a point to emphasize that, Andy Coulson, the former “News of the World" editor who worked for him, didn’t do any wrong on his watch. "Of course I regret," he said, "and I am extremely sorry, about the furor it has caused." Well, duh. What else is he going to say? "Oh yeah! Andy was a great hire! He made my office look smashing! We got such good publicity from hiring that Andy Coulson! He was the sugar in my office’s tea!" source

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13:59 // 3 years ago