Amid the unspooling controversy, the Wall Street Journal published an editorial that journalism professor Jeff Jarvis called an unbelievable defense of the boss.
The unsigned opinion piece has media watchers up in arms for its defense of the Murdoch media empire. It argues, much as a Fox and Friends segment did on the Friday show, that too much attention is being paid to the Murdoch papers. From the op-ed:
It goes on to defend Les Hinton, the publisher of News Corp.’s Down Jones subsidiary who stepped down on Friday, and lashes out at its critics:
The opinion piece is also not behind the Wall Street Journal’s paywall, allowing anyone to read its defense.
The New York Magazine called it a “tin-eared tirade.” Jarvis wrote a response to the editorial on his blog the Buzz Machine, hoping the scandal would break up Murdoch’s empire and diminish institutional journalism. However, he thinks it unlikely that Murdoch will relinquish control of his empire, even in the face of the ever-widening scandal.
It could, however, bring down the British government. Even Cameron’s own political party is questioning whether or not he can sidestep the scandal. From the First Post:
The op-ed is just another example in the growing library of media stories that show the complicated relationship the press has toward reporting on the scandal. As the Washington Post’s Paul Farhi writes:
David Carr in the New York Times reports that News Corps’s traditional way of handling scandal has been to pay out to those making the complaints, as it did in 2009 when a New Jersey company accused it of hacking into its password protected computer system. However, Carr does not believe money will solve News Corps.’s current problems.
Nor, it seems, will the op-ed in the Journal.