Fancy that! BSKYB the television broadcaster has fessed up to phone hacking. Is the latest revelation from another Murdoch controlled news organization all that surprising?
Besides being astonishingly embarrassing for Murdoch, it follows on the heels of his son James’s resignation from BSKYB and increases scrutiny on a proprietor who has broken his trust with the public. The circumstances of the cases were detailed by BSKYB, who while acknowledging that hacking was illegal, said it was authorized by the News Editor to benefit the public interest. SKY thundered this illegal act was only done under strict rules and for a specific purpose. No need for us to worry then.
Next time it may be less of a hassle to simply hand over the file to the police to avoid these sorts of problems.
The PR Verdict: “F” for Murdoch (yet again) and his newly found PR strategy of claiming protection by way of public interest. Is there any thing else to confess while we are here?
Cloaking the issue in the mantle of public interest has inherent risks. Since when has society broadly consented to giving editors carte blanche to break the law? Without defining the “public interest” served in this case, the waters are now muddied. Why not simply say they were all errors of judgment? Far simpler given the pattern and volume across Murdoch based businesses.
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What is your verdict? Is claiming the public interest a good PR strategy?