At the end of this phone-hacking scandal — and it seems clear we have not hit rock bottom yet — it may be Rupert Murdoch‘s own employees that do him in.
Bloomberg is reporting that independent directors of New York-based News Corp, lead by venture capital executive Tom Perkins and Viet Dinh, the chief architect of the USA Patriot Act, “have begun questioning the company’s response to the crisis and whether a leadership change is needed.”
Of the 16 seats on the News Corp board the independent directors hold nine. According to Bloomberg they are concerned about the “quality and quantity” of information they are getting about the investigation.
More importantly, faith in Murdoch’s grip on reality seems to be diminished.
“Some directors said Murdoch, the company’s 80-year-old chairman and chief executive officer, appeared to be in denial over the fallout from the scandal in an interview he gave last week to the Wall Street Journal.”
Indeed. One wonders how this morning’s strange op-ed was greeted.
Fortunately for Murdoch, who owns nearly 40% of News Corp stock, the complaints of his independent director may have limited effect. Bloomberg talked to an expert who says:
“Rupert Murdoch controls the votes of the company through the Class B shares…He can just replace them if he wants. They may do something, but it will be temporary. Maybe he becomes chairman, but this is still his company and he can do what he wants. When he controls the stock, he controls the board.”
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