Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Murdoch Public Relations Exercise 1 – 0 Parliament

Do not be fooled for one minute by Rupert Murdoch's new friend, Humility. Less than a week ago, Murdoch told the Wall Street Journal that News Corp had made only “minor mistakes” in handling the crisis that had forced the closure of the News of the World and scuppered its bid for British Sky Broadcasting.

Then somebody with a lot more business sense than him decide to bring in Edelman, the largest independent PR agency in the world.  Within two days, Brooks had resigned, Murdoch apologised to the Dowler family and full page 'apology ads' appeared in every major newspaper in the country. Murdoch even interrupted his son's first answer to say that this was the "most humble day of my life". He later went on to say: "I would like to say just how sorry I am and how sorry we are to particularly the victims of illegal voicemail interceptions and to their families."

However, the constant slamming of his hands on the desk in front of him showed a man irritated by having to explain his actions to someone, a man used to being in charge and getting his own way. At one point his wife, and very own Charlie's Angel, leant forward to try and curtail him. Edelman had probably warned him about this prior to the hearing.

"I was absolutely shocked, appalled and ashamed when I heard about the Milly Dowler case two weeks ago," he told MPs. In fact he was so shocked, appalled and ashamed by the news that he didn't think to apologise until ten days later. On the instruction of Edelman, presumably.

Sadly, the 'comedian and UKUncut member' only served to advance Edelman's good work further by giving Murdoch the chance to continue heroically with the hearing, jacket off, shirtsleeves showing, in full view of the watching millions. It's hard to believe but Murdoch had actually managed to cut it with the sympathy vote.

Moment of the Day: was obviously when Mrs M, having sat through the entire proceedings resembling an oriental tribute to Princess Diana’s fashion sense, proceeded to throw the Edelman Finishing School pamphlet out the window and completely chavved it. Class, as they say.