Thursday, 21 July 2011

Dear Mr Murdoch

“You’re King of The Tits” goes Queen’s Roger Taylor’s re-released song about Rupert Murdoch. Blaming him for “screwing up The Times,” buying up the airwaves and his “bare-assed cheek,” Taylor plainly isn’t a fan.

Roger Taylor

In this updated version of the 1994 song Dear Mr Murdoch, Taylor suggests the Australian media tycoon doesn’t know if “he’s a Yank, Oz or a Pom” before accusing him of “sharpen[ing] our hatred” and “blunt[ing] our minds.” He blames him for “twist[ing] and ly[ing]” and leaving us “drowning in nipples and bingo and sex crimes.”

Taylor’s dislike for the tycoon first came to light when he funded Manchester United fans in 1998 in their battle to stop Murdoch buying the club. Now, in a statement he explains his “original lyrics speak for themselves” and that this is why he has chosen to re-release a song about a man who he thinks is “really the pits.”

The most relevant line in the song in today’s context is: “Dear Murdoch you’re a powerful man, you control half the media whose lifeblood is scam.”

Like Jim Morrison before him, Taylor plainly believes: “Whoever controls the media, controls the mind.” Dear Mr Murdoch probably won’t choose to listen to this tune himself though.

1 comment:

Matthew de Unger Brown said...

The British media is, despite the current furore, in good health though a bit trashy; Rupert Murdoch hasn’t dented it; Rupert Murdoch has contributed to the survival of a popular quality press and more than anything Rupert Murdoch’s invention of Sky News and BSkyB was an exceedingly good development.

If you add everything up, Rupert Murdoch and News Corp have been good for newspapers over the past several decades, keeping them alive and vigorous and noisy and relevant. Without him, the British newspaper industry might have disappeared entirely.

I admire the visionary, risk-taking determination that has placed him ahead of the game as the media business has been transformed through globalisation and digitisation. It’s been the ability to see around corners that has ushered him from two modest papers inherited from his father in Adelaide to the head of a company with about $33 billion in annual revenues.

I’d still bet on Rupert and News Corp to prevail. The guy’s a force of nature and his restless innovations have, on balance and with caveats, been good for the media and a more open world.