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Murdoch to Media - Monopoly has ended, get used to it
Posted by: McQ on Monday, November 17, 2008

Rupert Murdoch, addressing the demise of newspapers, takes the media as a whole on and tells them that the old version of the game is over and they'd better figure out how to work within the new parameters if they hope to survive.

Nothing particularly new about that argument, but it is interesting to see Murdoch say out-loud to the media what some would only hint at obliquely:
"My summary of the way some of the established media has responded to the internet is this: it's not newspapers that might become obsolete. It's some of the editors, reporters, and proprietors who are forgetting a newspaper's most precious asset: the bond with its readers."
The print media will survive all of this once they figure out the business model what works and gains them a profit. What Murdoch is pointing out though is it is perhaps not the medium, per se, that's the dinosaur, but instead some of the editors, reporters and proprietors who refuse to confront the sea-change that has overcome them. And the other very important point, of course, is the MSM as a whole has done much to lose the trust of its readers and viewers.

Interstingly Murdoch talks about a problem that is common for many industries, not just the media:
"The complacency stems from having enjoyed a monopoly—and now finding they have to compete for an audience they once took for granted. The condescension that many show their readers is an even bigger problem. It takes no special genius to point out that if you are contemptuous of your customers, you are going to have a hard time getting them to buy your product. Newspapers are no exception."
Nor are the old network news operations which continue to decline is viewership. Murdoch continues:
"It used to be that a handful of editors could decide what was news-and what was not. They acted as sort of demigods. If they ran a story, it became news. If they ignored an event, it never happened. Today editors are losing this power. The Internet, for example, provides access to thousands of new sources that cover things an editor might ignore. And if you aren't satisfied with that, you can start up your own blog and cover and comment on the news yourself. Journalists like to think of themselves as watchdogs, but they haven't always responded well when the public calls them to account."
That's the reality that many within the media refuse to acknowledge. Just as the church began to lose its power when its interpretation of the Bible challenged after Gutenberg printed it in mass quantities, the same has happened to the media with the advent of the internet.

They are no longer the sole arbiter of what is or isn't news and with that, they have lost their ability to shape both news and the resultant national conversation that ensues. The fact that the supposed watchdogs are now watched closely is galling to many of them.

Murdoch uses the well know example of Dan Rather and the forged documents to make the point:
"Far from celebrating this citizen journalism, the establishment media reacted defensively. During an appearance on Fox News, a CBS executive attacked the bloggers in a statement that will go down in the annals of arrogance. '60 Minutes,' he said, was a professional organization with 'multiple layers of checks and balances.' By contrast, he dismissed the blogger as 'a guy sitting in his living room in his pajamas writing.' But eventually it was the guys sitting in their pajamas who forced Mr. Rather and his producer to resign.
The media has had to figuratively eat those words on multiple occasions since.

There is obviously going to be a winnowing of the media. But as Rupert Murdoch points out, it most likely won't be the medium itself that will end up being the dinosaur, but instead, many of those who make it up and refuse to change.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

Another sterling ’verification’ job was the recent Sarah Palin "Africa is one country" story.
Further proof, largely of their bias, but also an indication of the poor quality of corroboration on stories.

Kinda makes ya wonder just how good it ever really was doesn’t it?
Written By: looker
URL: http://
It’s mas I’ve been saying since the 70’s, Bruce, starting with AM vs FM, them vs Satalite/cable, internet whatever.

The issue isn’t the medium, it’s the content.

Granted that the mediums each have ther own problems that they bring to the table, not none of them are insurmountable in terms of survivability.
Thereby, we’re forced to look at the content of what the Dinosaur media have been pushing... and guess what? Looker gives as good an example as any to their main problem... and it’s the one to which they simply will not pay heed since it requires a challange to their worldview... It’s their CONTENT that’s being rejected.

To your question, looker, it never WAS much good... but when they had the monopoly, it didn’t matter much in terms of market penetration.

Written By: Bithead
Further proof, largely of their bias, but also an indication of the poor quality of corroboration on stories.

Kinda makes ya wonder just how good it ever really was doesn’t it?
Walter Cronkite’s coverage of Vietnam had its bias and fake aspects. One example: Hue, during Tet ’68: during an interview of a Marine officier, the Marine stated that the fighting was essentially over with only minor mopping up remaining. Yet someone dubbed in the sounds of heavy gunfire . . .

Written By: Don
URL: http://
Don -
TET was exactly one of the instance I was thinking of when I asked how good it ever really was.

Like the now major non-discussion of the Africa faux pas, when it wasn’t the way they told you, who knew?
Except people who had been there, who had no means of telling you, no means of proving it, and/or were suspected of having an ax to grind. At best they were just people off the street or at worst, if they were causing too much trouble with their contrary information, they were kooks, cranks, and possibly mentally unstable individuals (as defined by the powers of the media).

Before it was exactly the version of the Catholic Church pre Gutenburg - believe what we tell you, or go to hell, because to get to the source of our knowledge, you’re going to have to practically become one of us.

The recent instances are actually legion if you’ll think about them - from George Bush’s records, to Beauchamp, Trig Palin and "Africa is one country".
Sadly I see no reason to think it’s gotten worse, I think it’s just we have TOTO running loose now, and he keeps pulling the curtain open to reveal the wizard more and more often.

Keep up the good work TOTO.

Written By: looker
URL: http://
What a fantastic piece. Murdoch is spot on: it’s not the medium, it’s the managers of it. When the primary news sources begin to resemble that newsworthy-event, the crash of the Hindenberg, it’s because the public can’t trust them due to gross incompetence wrought for the purposes of maintaining a bias.

They wish to report a certain thing for certain ends, rush it through (the Palin story was basically an internet forward), and then end up eating crow.

Newspapers will stick around; it’s the editors that need culling. A new generation needs to bring some fresh perspective to the world of print, instead of legions of minions doing the bidding of the liberal illuminati and getting an over-inflated sense of self-importance.
Written By: Palinpal
URL: http://
It can’t happen soon enough for my taste. You can go all the way back to Walter Durranty turning the NY-Times into Stalin’s mouthpiece, maybe even further. The MSM are the most arrogant, and stupid radical lot ever. And have long had more influence than they deserved.
Written By: kyleN
Another sterling ’verification’ job was the recent Sarah Palin "Africa is one country" story.
Further proof, largely of their bias, but also an indication of the poor quality of corroboration on stories.
Largely of their bias!?
If I’m not mistaken, wasn’t the Africa story broke by Carl Cameron of FoxNews? He reported that McCain aides told him about the Palin "Africa, country or continent?" As far as we know, that is true. That McCain aides did tell him of the Africa nonsense. They asked Palin and she denied it.
So what’s the beef?
That it was FoxNews being biased against the Republican? I think you’ll have a hard time selling that one.

I stated at the time here that I thought the story was hard to swallow. But a lot of people bought it. Including a great many on the Right. Why? Because it was reported by FoxNews. Had it been MSNBC, it would have come with great suspect. There’s a reason why the vindictive aides told FoxNews and not MSNBC. Whether or not the aides’ stories are true, well we just have to decide for ourselves.
Palin said a lot of stupid things out there, but I believe that the stories are probably exaggerated.

But "proof of bias"!? Not that story, anyway.

Anyway, Murdoch’s piece is winded.

Other media just came along to provide niche products that people want. Radio, cable news, internet...
One doesn’t need to be Sherlock Holmes to deduce that.

Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
I keep reading how the old media is dead but they just elected a President by not covering certain stories. By being the ’gate keepers’ they got to decide what made it into the populace that is not actively involved in politics. The internet tried awfully hard to get them (the MSM)to cover certain things. When the MSM refused that was the end of it.

Go ahead, tell me how they are dead again.
Written By: SkyWatch
URL: http://
If I’m not mistaken, wasn’t the Africa story broke by Carl Cameron of FoxNews? He reported that McCain aides told him about the Palin "Africa, country or continent?" As far as we know, that is true. That McCain aides did tell him of the Africa nonsense. They asked Palin and she denied it.
So what’s the beef?

It seems that Martin Eisenstadt, a fake McCain aid, "leaked" the story.

Written By: Don
URL: http://
Other media just came along to provide niche products that people want. Radio, cable news, internet...
Ahh, but the MSM share is shrinking. And everyone knows they are biased as hell.
Written By: Don
URL: http://
As long as people spend time sitting in a bathroom, there will be a market for newspapers. A newspaper is so much more convenient than a laptop computer in this and other situations. Then there is birdcaqge lining, puppy training, etc. If newspapers didn’t already exist, we would have to invent them.
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
ntDIwe jfkdkmybprjb, [url=]erqhupbbawwz[/url], [link=]lyjqhnusunoe[/link],
Written By: 7
Are you sure about that?
However, while MSNBC — which ran with Eisenstadt’s story, along with The New Republic — has retracted the story (that Eisenstadt was the McCain camp leak), Fox News won’t be retracting Carl Cameron’s original report about the Palin/Africa flap, because it did not come from Eisenstadt — which the Huffington Post was told on background earlier this week and which the filmmakers confirmed to TVNewser Thursday:
"To be very clear, no, we were not the source for Carl Cameron and never spoke to him," Mirvish tells TVNewser. "We took credit for his anonymous sourcing. If they were going to be cowards, then we figured we may as well step in."
It’s a big mess.
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
Just how badly the MSM failed to educate the average voter:

NPR and the New York Times are specifically mentioned by the interviewees.
Written By: Adriane
URL: http://
Murdoch should have said all this 4 years ago. It was just as obvious then. I wonder why he didn’t. Too little too late.
Written By: David
Yeah Pogue, and you’re very adequately making the whole point.

The media sent out the story, people decided to believe that it made much more sense that the woman who is the elected governor of ALASKA is a complete fluking DUMB @ss.
Bias projector? Yes, okay! Wow! Makes perfect sense that a person who could go that far in life would be such a stupid sh!t, look at it, conservative, Alaska...sure, gotta be. Yeah, gotta be!

Now defending a story that was already all too quietly debunked and the mighty media that trump ted the story now quietly puts it’s retraction on page 3200 and we move along. And Fox news source wasn’t Eisenstadt...big it’s someone who heard this story and relayed it themselves. Woodeeeehaaaa.

It’s not a big mess, it’s a lie.
End result - to you, reasonable doubt leaning towards "gotta be true!" and 4 years from now people still think Sarah Palin is a dumb @ss.

I’d say it needs a big sign "Mission Freaking Accomplished".

Written By: looker
URL: http://
I think blaming the media for McCain’s defeat is A Bridge Too Far. He was basically tied in the polls until the economy tanked and he jumped on board the bailout express, instead of proclaiming loudly that the fingerprints of Barney Frank and Chris Dodd, among others, were all over this one. His epitaph will be Nice Guy, Finished Last. Better to lose an election than blame a fellow Senator for his mistakes.

Yes, the media is biased, but the vast majority of Americans know it. What they knew, and voted on, was that McCain was not going to fix things. I think he would have done less damage than Obama will, but I can see the other side of the argument.

Written By: MarkD
URL: http://
Ummm... Not quite sure how to take your response, looker.
But calm down-iddly-diddly-diddly-iddly...

Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://

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