Rupert Murdoch’s BSkyB bid ‘threatens media plurality’, says NUJ

Journalists union calls on Culture Secretary to block takeover

 

Press baron Rupert Murdoch’s £11.7 billion bid for control of BSkyB ‘threatens media diversity and plurality’, according to the National Union of Journalists.

The NUJ said in a statement today that a deal between Sky and 21st Century Fox for Murdoch to take over the 61 per cent of BSkyB he doesn’t already own should be blocked by the government.

Now the bid has been formerly made, Culture Secretary Karen Bradley has ten days to refer the deal to broadcast regulator Ofcom.

Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ general secretary, accused Murdoch of ‘corporate opportunism’ and warned of a ‘toxic consolidation of power’ in the media.

She said:

“It is vital that this deal is halted until part two of the Leveson Inquiry has taken place.

Most of the British public do not believe that Rupert Murdoch is a fit and proper person to run BSkyB.

And while there are clear reasons of corporate opportunism that drive his desire to finally clinch this deal, there’s no benefit for the public in this takeover being given the green light.

We need greater plurality in our media, not an ever-further toxic consolidation of power and control.”

Murdoch is 21st Century Fox’s executive co-chairman and former chairman and CEO. Fox currently owns 39.14 per cent of BSkyB, which includes Sky One, Sky News and Sky Sports.

Murdoch also owns the Times, the Sunday Times and the Sun, along with Fox News, the Wall Street Journal and others, as chairman and CEO of News Corporation.  

See: Murdoch’s Sun says ‘crush’ rail staff and sack them if they strike

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