News of the World crashes out of existence, and…

Well, hmmm, not sure what to say. Except I spend last evening with an old friend and a great local journalist, who pointed out the loss of advertising revenue was remarkable (and in our lifetimes at least) unprecedented.

In a few short days one of the most powerful press barons, who has traded on his capacity to call the public mood better than those politicians his papers often lacerated for being out of touch, has been subjected to a humiliating climbdown.

However, this story has so many hares running loose, who knows where it’s going to end. The collapse of an historic title like this may only be a semi colon, rather than the full stop in this story.

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  • Nunoftheabove

    Mick

    Yes tough to know how to get this one framed just right yet – lot in it. Specifically on the ad revnue piece of it though, is there any dependable data out there showing the relationship between the dip/slump in print ad revenue and that which comparable and/or equivalent online presences are experiencing – any meaningful correlation ?

  • DC

    This is fantastic news, good riddance.

    I’m told the headline in tomorrow Guardian might be:

    Gotcha!

    Hopefully Tommy Sheridan will be released at the same time Andy Coulson is arrested.

    Justice might then be done.

  • Mark McGregor

    Mick,

    Anyone with the slightest wit knows this is a cut your losses prelude to next month’s launch of the ‘Sunday Sun ‘- based at the same offices with the same staff as the NOTW.

    The readers of this shite paper will fall for it and it’ll be profit as usual in House Murdoch by September.

  • pippakin

    The NOTW was a few sheets of paper, what made it were the people who produced it and gave it the reputation it had. Getting rid of it doesn’t solve the problem of the criminal activities carried on by NOTW journalists, and others, and authorised by NOTW executives, and others.

    What is shown is how easy it is to dump something that has become embarrassing and is anyway part of what appears to be an industry in decline.

    News International are exactly the same. The same executives are doing the same jobs. This is no victory for the public, but it may well be a clever move by News International.

  • John Ó Néill

    Apparently the domain names were secured a couple of weeks ago so it seems someone had already gamed how this might play out. The plan is obviously to try an avoid a wider contagion effect on other Murdoch industries.

  • Mark McGregor

    John,

    Which domain names? If the likes of ‘sundaysun.com’ were recently bought by INM there is a big bunch of whip ass waiting for the bastard child of the NOTW.

  • Dewi

    We all need to keep the pressure on to get Murdoch out of civilised conversation, He’s not a good person.

  • Im not sure that advertising was aa crucial factor in itself.
    I think it is obvious that Advertisers need newspapers too…especially one which has the biggest market share.
    And certainly some of the Advertising Executives who have appeared on screen in the last 36 hours appeared a bit taken aback by it all.
    They dont like their advertising campaigns dicated by Mumsnet and the Twitterati.
    Viral campaigns (and this is the first time Ive brought myself to use the word “viral”) are all very well when you hit the jackpot with those cute Meerkats and Evian Babies.
    But nobody can really withstand the effect of a “viral” campaign. I know there was some story a few weeks ago about a car company being targetted because somebody didnt like its campaign.
    Ford, Mitsibushi, British Legion, Virgin Holidays and the rest would probably not have got worked up about it all if there was not a concerted campaign to sway their thinking.
    News of the World needed Ford, Mitsibushi, British Legion and Virgin Holidays…….but those companies needed the News of the World and will need the Sunday Sun.
    So getting rid of the News of the World is the easy answer.
    It gets the advertisers back on board. Which they actually want.
    It demonstrates that Murdoch passes the fit and proper person condition….not necessarily in the public mood but enough for Jeremy Hunt to sign up.
    It gives News International a chance to get its seven day newspaper.
    Reduce staff levels.
    And re-employ SOME journos on a new and worse contract.
    The parade of ex-News International folks (two reviewing the papers on Sky News at this moment) or having microphones thrust at them in Wapping will be effectively campaigning for a post in the new paper so will probably not be uber-critical of Murdoch.

    The NOTW will sign off in a blaze of glory. All receipts going to “our heroes”, “victims charities” and the launch of the new newspaper will be a super soaraway super giveaway occasion.
    Which is of course what the readership wants.
    They dont want to boycott the newspaper any more than the advertisers…or the government.
    They felt duty bound to be outraged.
    But its all a bit hard on 200 journalists or the percentage who wont be re-employed. Have they lost their jobs because of “mob rule”? I doubt it.
    Theyve lost their jobs because they were sacrified by a ruthless employer.
    News International was sluggish about this for years when the rights of 4,000 (FOUR THOUSAND!) people were being violated.
    When their financial rights were threatened News International acted quickly.
    Its that transparent. But it will work.
    Ironically the NUJ is “outraged”.
    Respectable journalists distanced themselves from tabloid hacks “we arent like them” but now find a common cause with their Union brothers and sisters.
    Thats hypocrisy.
    Quite possibly if respectable journalists (anda tip of the hat to the few that told the story) had actually shone more light on the seedier side of the Street of Shame, their tabloid colleagues (the good ones post-Mulcaire might still have a job.
    Alas these NOTW who cheered the tumbrils taking politicians to jail or out of office and demanded appropriate punishments for wrong doers they had exposed.
    But what goes round comes around.
    With a vengeance.

  • DC

    Well said Dewi.

    I also commend your boycotting idea entirely.

    I don’t see what all the fuss is about re losing the NOTW for good – and there is a lot of fuss on the TV about it – I mean don’t get me wrong it’s a fantastic story – but the London-centric media are going nuutttss over this.

    Max Mosley, Tommy Sheridan and Ricky Hatton must be taking pleasure out of this – all the hassle coming Murdoch’s way.

    Keep it coming.

  • John Ó Néill

    Apparently thesunonsunday.com and other variants were registered about two weeks ago. That has been floating around for a few days now.

  • Dewi

    fjh – try and keep it succint mun – I love reading your stuff but ain’t got a lot of time,

  • Mark McGregor

    John,

    http://www.thesunonsunday.com was registered on the 5th July according to whois.

    Funny that.

  • DC….
    Im not a big fan of Journalists and Journalism but I think youre being a little unfair.
    Journalists like good stuff about Journalism. They have a self-image which seems at odds with the publics perceptions.
    I dont think Journalists are quite the champions of freedom that they see themselves to be. The parade of Journalists interviewing Journalists is evidence of their self-regard.
    This time they were caught out because there were civilian casualties so to speak.

    But nor do I think that Journalists are “all reptiles and pond life” which is just as untrue as the paragon belief.

    The answer lies somewhere in the middle.

  • Thanks Dewi……er I think that was a compliment almost.
    Never mind the width…..feel the quality and pray that I am soon re-employed in the voluntary sector. Im a people person.

  • wee buns

    Dog eat dog eats itself. There’s a natural justice in that.
    Agree with John it’s a sacrifice to try to protect bigger financial interests aka BSkyB.

    Neat little insight by Rundle who writes for Oz Crikey:

    ‘Murdoch’s pursuit of power without content, as a way to plug a hole in the world, has spread to every part of his organisation, and to its leading players. The sort of people attracted to, and staying with Murdoch, come from the ranks of, to quote a dead Russian “the sort of journalists who do not need to be bribed because they are sycophantic by nature.”

  • DC

    The NOTW lied, bribed, hack dead persons phones, spied seemingly on everyone with any sort of social standing and even those without it.

    Good riddance to NOTW – such a corrosive paper which invaded people’s privacy through hacking and spying and whatever else – there are jobs for these types of journalists – in authoritarian type states, working in the secret police.

    Seriously.

    The paper was toxic.

  • Dewi

    I’ts more than a toxic paper – it’s a rotten culture in the whole Murdoch operation. Not fit to run a chip shop.

  • DC

    Well said Dewi.

  • Comrade Stalin

    DC,

    It’s very unlikely that the NOTW were the only newspaper doing it.

  • DC

    What are the others left – the Mirror?

    Yes well if it’s been at it take it down along with the Sun too and the rest.

    But Murdoch’s money and almost total grip on Britain’s media is something that should be loosened, to me that is the priority at the moment.

    Time to force an evidence-based – unfit-to-own – loosening of said grip.

  • John Ó Néill

    Mark – the Sun on Sunday story was being floated last weekend. You’d wonder what else is about to break on them.

  • pippakin

    The NOTW demise means nothing if the people committing and authorising the crime/s are still in place, and currently the worst of them are.

    The NOTW is 168 years old. Its a bit silly to treat it as though News International invented it, they didn’t they broke it, and the executives who did that are still there.

    In effect approximately 200 hundred people are about to lose their jobs because News International wanted a sacrifice that did not include Ms Brooks or the Murdochs.

  • nightrider

    In effect approximately 200 hundred people are about to lose their jobs because News International wanted a sacrifice that did not include Ms Brooks or the Murdochs.

    Nope, most will get new jobs at the super soaraway 7 day Sun. Their terms and conditions will be another matter. All newspapers are lossmaking.

    The prize is total control of BSkyB, whatever it takes, the print papers can be disposed of later. The government has delayed the announcement of Murdoch’s takeover until the autumn, by which time there should be ‘events, dear boy , events. And the process goes smoothly.
    Apart from some technical illegalities, this will be tomorrow’s chip paper, because people don’t care if Sky is owned by Robert Mugabe or Harriet Harman..
    Premiership football and Game of Thrones trump morality and ethics anytime. If anyone disagrees, write to your MP.

  • michael-mcivor

    The news of the world is going to be put beyond use-

    Did murdoch sell out-

  • abucs

    Are people surprised at what journalists will do to create (manufacture) interest?

    In my opinion, the old media has become sensational mouthpeices. Nothing more.

  • Well I for one am not surprised.
    I have often queried the provenance and agenda behind many news stories, to which Sluggerites have been pointed.
    My reward is usually a slap down that this is an irrelevance and that I should stick to the point. I feel validated.
    The provenance and the agenda of a journalist is obviously relevant.
    To say otherwise is just silly.

  • PaulT

    Wouldn’t get too concerned about loss of revenue from closing the NotW,

    MySpace was bought for $580,000,000 and sold for $35,000,000 (7%)

    It ain’t money with the Digger its power,

  • tuatha

    One must wonder what Brooks, aka Wade has on the Mudorcs who are not noted for loyalty when money is involved. She must know where a shed load of bodies are buried that she hasn’t yet been fed to the baying mob.
    FFS, even ‘call me dave’ Camoron had the sense to ‘let Coulson go, to spend more time with his wallet’ back in February, though why he hired him in the first instance is a question in itself, toadying up to the Sun King on assurance that he was clean?
    If so, then I have a bridge in Brooklyn he may be interested in buying