Tag Archives: Rupert Murdoch

➤ Rivals sniffy about Murdoch’s Daily — more an iPad magazine than a newspaper

The Daily, Jemima Kiss, The Guardian, review

Jemima Kiss on The Daily: “First impressions are that this looks quite Microsoft to me which is probably not exactly what Apple were hoping for — the navigation is like a not-quite-so-good version of Cover Flow, which is how you navigate albums in the iTunes store”

➢ View video of Guardian’s Jemima Kiss scrolling us through
The Daily’s first edition (above, 3min 42sec)

❚ WITH A HUGE ROLL OF THE DICE, Rupert Murdoch has sought to put a seal on his reputation as a visionary media tycoon by launching The Daily, a digital-only news operation created from scratch and designed specifically for the iPad. Much is riding on it, not just Murdoch’s personal legacy in the twilight of his career, but, in his own description, the future of how people produce and consume journalism…

➢ Read more at Guardian online: Rupert Murdoch unveils
next step in media empire — the iPad ‘newspaper’

The Daily❚ SO WHAT DOES AN iPAD NEWSPAPER FEEL LIKE? The answer is “not much like a newspaper”. Instead, The Daily feels much more like one of the better examples of an iPad magazine, along the lines of Wired or Virgin’s Project. Despite the fact that both publications are ultimately owned by the same company, The Daily is nothing like The Times’s iPad app, as there’s little attempt to replicate much of the look, feel or tone of a traditional print newspaper. There’s plenty of video, both in stories and the ads that are strewn through The Daily. In some cases, rather than use ordinary photographs, there are 360-degree panoramic shots…

➢ Read Ian Betteridge’s review at Guardian online: The Daily offers glitzy graphics, video and live updates at low cost

❚ IT’S NOT A ‘NATIVE’ iPAD EXPERIENCE AT ALL, it’s a news magazine torn up and stuffed, page-by-page onto the iPad screen… If this is the best that journalism’s brightest brains can do, given a huge budget and input from Apple itself, then we’re in worse trouble than I thought.

➢ Read Shane Richmond at The Telegraph online:
A complete failure of imagination

Rupert Murdoch

“Not a legacy brand”: Murdoch shows off The Daily at its launch

❚ RUPERT MURDOCH SPEAKING YESTERDAY: “The iPad demands that we completely reimagine our craft… The magic of newspapers — and great blogs — lies in their serendipity and surprise, and the deft touch of a good editor. We’re going to bring that magic to The Daily. Similarly, we can and we must make the business of newsgathering and editing viable again. In the tablet era there’s room for a fresh and robust new voice.

“No paper, no multimillion dollar presses, no trucks — we’re passing on these savings to the reader for just 14 cents a day… Our target audience is the 50m Americans who are expected to own tablets next year. Success will be determined by utility and originality. The Daily is not a legacy brand moving from the print to the digital world.”

➢ Launch of The Daily — Video of live presentation at the Guggenheim Museum, presented by Rupert Murdoch, chairman and CEO of News Corporation, and his editorial team (42 minutes)
➢ View demo of The Daily in action at thedaily.com

❚ TECHNOLOGY BLOGGER JOHN GRUBER: “Nothing groundbreaking, but better than most such efforts to date. The carousel feature is incredibly laggy. I can’t believe they shipped it like this. Maybe they’ve hired a good staff of writers and editors, but they sure need better designers and engineers. The experience just isn’t good enough.”

➢ John Gruber’s review at Daring Fireball

The Daily❚ THE NEWS SECTION IS EXTREMELY WEAK. The first edition contains precisely two real news articles, one of which (a story about Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak’s global address) had been thoroughly covered by all the major news outlets the previous day; the other, about the snow storm currently hitting the US, was borrowed from the AP.

➢ Read Lauren Indvik at Mashable: It’s a second-rate iPad magazine, not a newspaper

❚ THE DAILY IS PARTNERING with the Associated Press for its content… [although] it’s been selling itself as a place to go for original content. As its website puts it: The Daily is “a tablet-native national news brand built from the ground up to publish original content exclusively for the iPad”. Apparently “original” here means “not aggregated.” Which is fair enough. But “original content” also implies “special content.” The kind of content you can’t get anywhere else.

➢ Read Megan Garber at The Nieman Journalism Lab


1981 ➤ The day they sold The Times, both Timeses

❚ ON THIS DAY 30 YEARS AGO… “Australian newspaper tycoon Rupert Murdoch has agreed to buy The Times and Sunday Times newspapers. But the deal will only go ahead if Mr Murdoch can reach a deal with the print unions within the next three weeks over the introduction of new technology. Mr Murdoch will be expected to meet a number of conditions aimed at preserving the editorial integrity of the papers.”

➢ Read Murdoch bids to take over Times
— On This Day at BBC online

Rupert Murdoch, 1981,Harold Evans, Sunday Times, William Rees-Mogg, The Times

In media circles this was the “sale of the century”, and it is captured here in what the photographer Sally Soames calls her “best shot” … Rupert Murdoch announcing his purchase of Times Newspapers on Jan 22, 1981, to a press conference at the Portman hotel. He is flanked by Harold Evans, editor of The Sunday Times, and William Rees-Mogg, editor of The Times. © Sally Soames

This picture of two doomed gazelles at the feet of the tiger is the one photographer Sally Soames last year nominated as her Best Shot ever. I had the pleasure of working with her shortly before her retirement and a print of this historic photo adorns my bathroom wall. Sally’s back catalogue has been a who’s who of political and artistic giants since her first assignment for The Observer in 1963. She works exclusively in black and white and her photographs are instantly recognisable for the richness and depth of her blacks. She told The Guardian last year:

“I WAS WORKING FOR THE SUNDAY TIMES IN 1981, and there was a rumour that Rupert Murdoch was buying the paper, along with The Times. I was sent to a packed press conference given by Murdoch and the two editors. When the purchase was announced, I knew it was the end of The Sunday Times. My newspaper was going down the tubes. I had tears pouring down my face as I worked.

“As always, I went down the front. I was the littlest, always “the girl”. The three of them sat down, and it was everybody’s first sight of Murdoch. I had brought three cameras, one of them with a wide-angle lens. Everyone started shooting Murdoch – except me. I photographed all three: Harold Evans, the Sunday Times editor, on the left; William Rees-Mogg, the Times editor, on the right. They all had name plates, and I knew I had to get Murdoch’s in there, to identify him. I had to tell the story: two papers were going to change completely…”

➢ Update 2019: Read “fearless” Sally Soames’s
obituary at The Guardian

Universal Daily Register, 1785, newspapers, The Times

First issue of the Universal Daily Register in 1785, later to become The Times

❚ THE ROMANCE OF THE BRITISH PRESS has always derived from its being simultaneously glorious and wretched, from its earliest days when kings would jail upstart editors to the decade of continual strife throughout British industry, the 1970s. So powerful were the trade unions that, as former Times editor Simon Jenkins wrote in his 1979 book Newspapers, The Power and the Money: “Action taken… has brought one paper after another to the brink of financial ruin.” Mind you, rich proprietors also made pretty ineffectual managers. One of the more enlightened was the Canadian Roy Thomson, who flexed his muscle by shutting down for a whole year both of the world-renowned newspapers he owned and published in London — The Times (founded 1785, and 200 years later broadening its appeal from its historic role as the “Top People’s paper”) and The Sunday Times (founded 1821, which under Harry Evans had set benchmarks with its hugely influential investigative journalism). In 1980 the papers ran up a £15m loss (equivalent to £50m today) and by then Thomson had reached the end of his tether, so put them up for sale.

Those were the days when ten nationally distributed daily newspapers and nine Sundays averaged 13m paid-for sales every day of the week (serving a UK population of 56m). Seven millionaire contenders sprang into the marketplace to bid for the two Timeses, yet Harry Evans thought none was worthy to own the world’s most prestigious titles. His book Good Times Bad Times is the rippingmost yarn about real newspaper life — “Who were these seven dwarves, I asked a staff meeting, to seek the hand of Snow White?” It was the Australian wot won it. The deal led to 563 redundancies.

 Rupert Murdoch

Rupert Murdoch in his computerised offices and printing plant newly built at Wapping, 1986 © by Sally Soames, National Portrait Gallery collection