What papers does Rupert Murdoch read when he is in America? Not surprisingly perhaps his first choice is his American flagship, the New York Post. He reads it whether he is at work, or having breakfast. Or so he told Time magazine which interviewed him in connection with the10th anniversary of Fox News, the cable television network which he started as an alternative to CNN., and is reportedly the only news channel that is permanently switched on in the White House.
After The Post? He takes a look at the Wall Street Journal, he said,. But not more than the front page, then the editorial page. Apparently the stock tables don’t interest him that much, at least not early in the day. Then he switches to the NY Times What does he read there? “About the same” he told Time. “And that’s about it.” He does, he admits, scan the business pages of the NY Times in case there is something in The Times that’s not in The Post or the Wall Street Journal.
What about the London papers? “Sometimes during the day I get a chance to read special things in the papers from London” he admits. And after that? “Then I check out our Web sites for half an hour at most,” he added.
Asked by his interviewer Richard Stengel, managing editor of Time magazine: “You depend on newspapers?” Murdoch replied “Well, I’m 75 years old.”
Touching on the debate over the future or newspapers as opposed to other media, Stengel asked him “What do you still get out of them that you can’t get from other media?” Murdoch’s replied ” The danger we’re seeing at the moment is that people are zeroing in on only a few subjects, whereas if you pick up a good general newspaper, you read a lot of things you don’t expect to read, much of which are important, and make life more interesting.”
It was the one-sidedness of the American press that prompted him in 1996 to start Fox News, he said.”The good bulk of the press in this country was monolithic , liberal to varying degrees. I’m not saying that’s wrong. But the journalism schools and newspapers in this country are totally monopolistic. In the average city there’s one newspaper. And people like a choice of news.”
To mark the l0th birthday of Fox News, Murdoch hosted a big celebrity party in a street tent outside News Corp’s headquarters in Manhattan.