Murdoch: Journalism Triumphs

In a brilliant editorial drawn from his remarks in front of the FTC's workshop on journalism and the Internet, Rupert Murdoch writes that despite gloomy forecasts, journalism's future is "limited only by editors and producers unwilling to fight for their readers and viewers." Murdoch—who as chairman of News Corp controls The Wall Street Journal, Fox News, and the New York Post—sees three basic dangers that could befall journalism. The first is a loss of trust between an outlet and its readers, when a news organization stops giving people "the news they want" and starts "producing news for themselves," news that's irrelevant to their consumers. Second, Murdoch writes that the future of any news organization relies on its ability to "attract customers by providing news and information they are willing to pay for," since "the old business model based mainly on advertising is dead." Finally, Murdoch warns against both the "outdated thinking" that characterizes governmental attempts to regulate media and the "chilling" prospect of governmental aid. "What is most important," writes Murdoch, "is that the news industry remains free, independent—and competitive."