UPDATE: Editor’s Note: We used a headline similar to the one — “This Day in Murdochiana” — Huffington Post’s Eat The Press has been using in their Murdoch coverage. This was unintended. We will be sure to come up with a more distinctive tagline for Murdochania, Murdochiana, or whatever you’d like to call it.
You can take two different approaches to covering Rupert Murdoch‘s purchase of the Wall Street Journal. First, there’s the sober coverage of aforementioned Journal, which notes that a “key member of the controlling Bancroft family,” Christopher Bancroft, is embarking on a quixotic, last-ditch effort to stop Murdoch. He’s been approaching various investors in hopes of convincing them to buy enough voting shares of Dow Jones to give him the power to scuttle Murdoch’s purchase. Even the paper, which abhors the idea of a Murdoch-run newsroom, thinks Bancroft’s campaign does not have much of a chance.
Alternately, you can do like Jack Shafer and suggest the staff of the Journal could take lessons from their soon-to-be fellow Murdoch property: The Simpsons:
“One of the joys of writing about Murdoch is that you never go wanting for material. Last night, while searching news databases for a different subject, I stumbled across a 1984 Wall Street Journal article by Jane Mayer, now a staff writer at The New Yorker, about how Murdoch uses his publications for personal gain. Mayer writes:
“After [Murdoch] bought the New York Post in 1976, the paper was blatantly supportive of Hugh Carey‘s bid for reelection as New York’s governor. After his election, Mr. Carey’s administration granted a multimillion-dollar contract to run the state’s keno and lotto lottery operations to Leisure Systems Inc., whose chairman was Mr. Murdoch. State and company officials denied any quid pro quo … The lotto license was subsequently revoked when Mario Cuomo became governor in 1982. Mr. Cuomo, who also declines to be interviewed for this story, had been consistently opposed by the New York Post.”
Murdoch Street Journal reporters, there are your future options: Write it funny or write it like Pravda.