Today, in an event with the BBC as a participant (though with no apparent mention on its website), much of the media came together to petition Business Secretary Vince Cable not to allow the full takeover by News Corporation of BSkyB. A lot of differences were put aside as everyone who is anyone in the business made common cause against Rupe’s troops.
Signatories included the Maily Telegraph, Guardian Media Group, Trinity Mirror, the Daily Mail and General Trust, the BBC, BT, and Channel 4. The keyword emerging from the petition is plurality: that the further encroachment of the Murdoch empire would crowd out other players and consolidate power in fewer hands.
What may also be uppermost in the minds of those in the worlds of media and politics is the impact of the Murdochs on matters Stateside, where the lack of regulation over broadcasters has allowed Rupe to inflict the slanted and partisan attack dog that is Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse) on the population.
What happens next? Cable has to make his mind up whether to refer the matter to Ofcom. That would certainly cause Rupe’s troops to up the ante, and there would be a tide of hostile hackery trained on the saintly Vince. Then the rubber stamp has to be given by Young Dave, who has one of the Murdoch “family” on his payroll.
No pressure there, then.