Rupert Murdoch’s media empire is a “cancer on democracy,” said Kevin Rudd, former Australian prime minister. – CNN
Dominion Voting Systems is suing Fox News for defamation, seeking $1.6 billion. – NPR. Is there a pattern of behavior in Murdoch’s behavior? Judge for yourself based on these News Corp’s actions from around the globe:
– Broadcast baseless allegations of election fraud in the 2020 elections. Murdoch admitted that he knew hosts and guests on Fox News were endorsing lies from then-President Donald Trump, and that he chose not to take action to stop it. – NPR
– Hacked into the phones of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler and a parent of one of the Soham murder victims, as well as relatives of military killed in Afghanistan. – The Guardian “News of the World shut down and Murdoch was brought before a British parliamentary inquiry.” – NPR
– Bribed police officers. News of the World paid bribes worth £100,000 to up to five Met officers. – The Guardian
– Criticized for denying climate change. “Rupert Murdoch’s homeland media empire has been subjected to increasing criticism for pushing climate denialism, downplaying the severity of the crisis, and hyping exaggerated stories about the role of arson in the fires.” – Media Matters
– Use News Corp publications to attack FCC nominee that would regulate media outlets. The editorial board of News Corp.’s The Wall Street Journal continued its push to defeat the nomination of Gigi Sohn for the fifth Democratic seat on the Federal Communications Commission. – NextTV
– FOX personalities stump for Trump. Sean Hannity and Jeanine Pirro blatantly stumped for Trump – Joe My God
– Tucker Carlson promotes Hungarian fascist Orban. “Carlson celebrated Hungary as a “signpost to a better way” for America, a dog whistle to Hungary’s racist, anti-immigrant politics. – Media Matters
Mapping the spread and symptoms of the cancer on democracy
Stand up and fight, and fight hard
Kevin Rudd, a former prime minister of Australia, argues that Rupert Murdoch’s media empire is a “cancer on democracy” in the U.S., U.K. and Australia, using “mafia”-like intimidation tactics against dissenting voices. This issue “goes to the heart of our future democracies. Therefore we need to stand up and fight, and fight hard.” – CNN
Dominion Voting Systems lawsuit for defamation
“Murdoch is known to be a hands-on proprietor of his news outlets. Now a blockbuster lawsuit is confronting him with the consequences of some key decisions taken by leaders of Fox News. Voting-tech company Dominion Voting Systems is suing Fox News and parent company Fox Corp. for defamation, seeking $1.6 billion, claiming that the network broadcast baseless allegations of election fraud in the 2020 elections.
In evidence presented by Dominion, Murdoch admitted that he knew hosts and guests on Fox News were endorsing lies from then-President Donald Trump, and that he chose not to take action to stop it. For its part, Fox Corp. is arguing that the parent company and its top executives are wrongly being held responsible for reporting on comments made by a sitting president.” – NPR
Meddling in politics
“Former Australian prime minister and the newly appointed ambassador to the U.S., Kevin Rudd, has spent the last two years lobbying for an inquiry into media diversity in Australia. He has taken particular aim at the influence of the Murdoch media, and called Rupert Murdoch a threat to democracy.
“Another former Australian prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, told NPR last year that Murdoch and his media outlets ” very directly”: “[Rupert Murdoch] is responsible for Fox News. Fox News has played, by far, the largest single part in the polarization of American politics, in the amplification of political hatred. I would challenge anyone … to nominate which individual alive today has done more to undermine American democracy than Rupert Murdoch.” – NPR
Opposed key protections of the public’s airwaves for ordinary citizens
“News Corp. is a multinational, multi-platform media conglomerate. The ALEC Communications and Technology Task Force, on which News Corp. has a seat, has long had a far-reaching agenda to deregulate the communications industry and has opposed key protections of the public’s airwaves for ordinary citizens, such as “net neutrality” and the “Fairness Doctrine.”
News Corp.’s particular business interests in the jurisdiction of this ALEC task force are not fully known… Mr. Guidera has been with News Corporation since 2007, leading the Company’s state public policy initiatives … Guidera is the fellow who shows up at corporate bill factory ALEC’s meetings, fronting for Fox News and Murdoch” – Twin Cities Daily Planet
Fox personalities defend the American Legislative Exchange Council
“With Fox personalities defending the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and the Wall Street Journal publishing editorials criticizing its detractors (including the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD), by name), some have wondered whether or not Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation, which owns Fox News, the Wall Street Journal, and many broadcast licenses, is an ALEC member. Yes, News Corp. is an ALEC member. It has funded ALEC operations.” – PR Watch
Using Fox properties to attack Gigi Sohn, potential FCC regulator
“All of the Fox properties have been very active in pushing things, ideas — false ideas like Sohn hates the police, she’d be bad for rural America, she wants to censor conservatives, she’s bad for media diversity. None of these are supported by any facts that you can find if you spend 30 minutes objectively researching her record.
Here are just a couple Fox News segments about Gigi. You will hear one Fox anchor talking to Ted Cruz, and another Fox guest referencing the CCP, the Chinese Communist Party. News anchor: What do you think of this woman, Gigi? The name sounds a little funky, and the glasses make me think twice, but she seems like she has a radical agenda. Now she’s in charge of this place? Sen. Ted Cruz: Yeah. Look, she hates Fox News. She has been vocal and partisan a long time. News guest: Looking up the word “hack” in the dictionary, Gigi Sohn’s photo should be right next to it. She wants to pull the broadcast license of this network. Gigi Sohn will turn the FCC into the CCP, and this is a bridge even Pyongyang wouldn’t go over.
Part of the argument on Fox News is that if Gigi is added to the FCC, she’ll somehow censor Fox. But there’s no evidence that she has any plans to do that at all. Even if she wanted to, it’s not like she could, because that is not a power the FCC has. In fact, the more likely outcome is the opposite: that she would encourage Fox to say whatever they want. Katharine Trendacosta: I don’t even understand that argument because Gigi is pretty infamously in favor of free expression online, and the FCC has no control over that.
there have been several Journal opinion pieces, including one by the editorial board with headlines like, “A Media Censor for the FCC?” “Hyperpartisan Gigi Sohn Doesn’t Belong at the FCC,” and my favorite, “Gigi Sohn and the Police: Democratic senators are at risk if they vote for Biden’s progressive FCC nominee.” – The Verge
Take Away: Stop billionaire media moguls destroying democracy by spreading disinformation, opposing media regulations and promoting their favored political candidates in order to make more money.
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Reposted from Democracy Labs with permission.
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