Sunday, October 14, 2007

Murdoch to Close on Neil Cavuto's Research Department in 4th Quarter, but TV Starts Up

Tomorrow Fox Business Network makes its debut. Rupert Murdoch knows where the big money is, in big business. His TV station launch combined with his purchase of Dow Jones Inc., owner of the Wall Street Journal, positions the media tycoon for more high dollar ad revenue. Legally, Fox Business Channel's main competitor has an exclusive agreement with the WSJ until 2012, but Rupert already has a team of lawyers going through the contract. Rumors are he wants to buy out the deal.

Two directors resigned from the Dow Jones board because of the sellout of the prominent financial journal, approved the end of July and expected to close in the fourth quarter. Leslie Hill said this in her resignation letter:

The short term financial benefit is difficult to deny. In my opinion, however, it not enough to outweigh the potential ramifications of the loss of an independent global news organization with unmatched credibility and integrity. Although I respect the diligent efforts made to preserve the Journal’s editorial independence, in the end, I do not believe that a special committee could ever be a match for true independence

As a family member as well as a director, I am proud of the Journal’s long history and the fact that as a family we have contributed to the creation of two of the most powerful brands in the world.

Mr. Dieter von Holtzbrinck resigned prior to Ms. Hill. He stated in his resignation:

I’m very worried that Dow Jones unique journalistic values will long-term strongly suffer after the proposed sale.

I cannot prove that my worries are right. I can only refer to News Corp. business practices in the past, can only refer to Jim Ottaway’s article in the Journal, etc. I do not believe that the “Special Committee” can finally prevent Murdoch from doing what he wants to do, from acting his way.

Hang on Neil Cavuto! Rupert's working to get you that Wall Street Journal brand, the one Leslie Hill bragged about in her letter. When that happens, think how far Fox Business Network can go. Get those softball questions ready for the Bush team. Fox Business reporters surely can hold their "that's it?" comments when George W. Bush says something irrelevant to the question asked. Will that keep the gold coming for Fox Business Network?