Monday, November 20, 2006

O. J. is Squeezed

Chalk one up for the power of the people....

"Swayed by Public Opinion NewsCorp Cancels O. J. Book, TV Special."

Warms the cockles of your heart doesn't it.

Media mega-mogul Rupert Murdoch, who has ruthlessly elbowed his way into our daily lives.... controlling big chunks of our daily consumption of information and entertainment.... has cancelled the book and TV special in which O.J. Simpson describes how he would have killed his ex-wife, Nichole, and her friend, Ron Goldman.

And, Nichole was not just O. J.'s wife, but the mother of his children. Brutally, mercilessly murdered. A civil court found O. J. liable for their deaths, although a race-baited jury let him off in criminal court.

Murdoch, who is the Chairman and CEO of News Corp, said this was an "ill considered" project. But, without the outrage of the victims families and the public, you can bet this "ill considered" project would have gone forward.

The book, "If I Did It," (now recalled from booksellers) was published by ReganBooks (owned by Murdoch) and was scheduled to be promoted on the Fox broadcast network (owned by Murdoch). This was Murdoch's baby, start to finish, his judgment of "fair and balanced" entertainment.

To get an idea of the impact Murdoch has on our daily lives, here are some of the companies his News Corp owns and tightly controls:

Film Entertainment- 20th Century Fox and affiliated companies
TV- FOX Broadcasting, FOX TV Stations, MyNetwork TV, STAR
Cable- Fox News Channel, FOX Sports, FX, National Geographic
Direct Broadcast & Satellite TV- BSkyB, DIRECTV, FOXTEL
Newspapers- NY Post, UK Sun, UK The Sunday Times
Magazines- The Weekly Standard, Gemstar-TV Guide Intl.
Books- HarperCollins Publishers, ReganBooks
Other Assets- MySpace, News Interactive

The Fox TV broadcast had been scheduled for the November "sweeps" as a way to boost ratings. But Murdoch monumentally misjudged the public's sense of decency. The only thing that got swept was his purulent project.

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