Murdoch wants the New York Times, says biographer

Many thought that Rupert wouldn’t get away with an audacious bid for Dow Jones, the family-controlled owner of the Wall Street Journal. but, eventually, it worked.

And according to the News Corp chairman’s biographer Michael Wolff – whose forthcoming biographer is serialised in Vanity Fair – he’s after The New York Times too. Wolff writes:

“He’d really like to own it too. Now, everbody around him tells him that buying that Times is pretty much impossible…

“But it’s obviously irrestible to him. I’ve watched him go through the numbers, plot out a merger with the Journal’sbackroom operations, and fantasize about the staff’s quitting en masse as soon as he entered the scared temple.”

Over the last nine months Wolff has got closer to the media baron than perhaps anyone outside his trusted inner circle of advisers and the interviews reveal a lot about his character.

Murdoch has, despite what News Corp says, no time for prevailing converged, multimedia theory.

“He’s really not interested in all this talk about newspapers as the basis of new information franchises…blah blah. That’s maybe what they say at News Crop to gull Wall Street. But Rupret Murdoch wants the physical thing.

“He pokes the paper, slashes at it – move this, reduce that, enlarge this. It may be the ultimate fantasy, his continuing, contrary belief in newspapers.”

When asked who to vote for in the upcoming US presidential elections, Murdoch replies: “Obama – he’ll sell more papers”.

Wolff tells the New York Observer that the book should be out in December.

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