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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Top 5 Reasons Why Phone Hacking is Totally Unacceptable

What in the heck are News Corp (NASDAQ: NWS) employees thinking about any way?  Have true morals been totally thrown out the window, and reporters/editors are willing to sell their souls and their mothers just for that next breaking story that will kill the competition and get them another news Emmy award?  Here are the top 5 reasons why we need to stop this insanity and get back to real journalism…sheesh, so high school Rupert Murdoch!!

5) There’s enough misery in the world already to report on, so why illegally search it out.  Our culture is so reliant on not only news, but totally mind-blowing horrific news that reporters try to seek it out at all costs.  However, there are so many major events around us that are continually being blasted throughout the airwaves that grab our attention and keep us glued to our flat screen television sets all day every day.  Reporters and researchers don’t need to keep illegally tapping into people’s private mailboxes and voicemails to get to the best stories.  From Casey Anthony to Carmageddon to Debt Limits to Greek Economic Tragedies to Japanese Earthquakes news begets more news and it’s never ending.  And not only that, because of Twitter, Facebook and other forms of social media we can get that news expediently and in real-time. 

4) If all the newspapers do it maybe it makes it alright.  Wrong!!  If everyone goes out and robs a bank does it make it okay?  NO, so why is it different in this case.  A recent guest from England on Real Time with Bill Maher on HBO suggested that News of the World (published by News International which is owned by News Corporation) is one of a number of newspapers that practice the same type of shady investigative reporting, which not only includes phone hacking but also making payments to police officers and using improper influence to persuade politicians and the police. 

3) Privacy laws are created for a reason.  Luckily News Corp has not yet been charged with any wrongdoing here in the United States.  The laws in England are a lot looser in regards to privacy than we have in our constitutionally protected country of ours.  If there is any hint of this illicit behavior by this media conglomerate inside our strict borders, then they better get themselves a really good lawyer who specializes in privacy and compliance.  Consumers and the average American citizen are very well protected in this country from the predators out there who eavesdrop online and in the mobile space looking for backdoor into our private information (social security numbers, credit card info, phone numbers, email, home addresses, etc. etc.)

2) Hard news is supposed to be gotten from credible sources and thorough research.  What happened to great newsmen and newswomen such as Woodward and Bernstein, who broke the Watergate scandal in the 1970’s?  These experts in news gathering used a cunning sense of drive and motivation to get to the heart of the most newsworthy event in American political history that drove a President out of the White House and caused a loss of respect and admiration for the highest office in the land for years to come.  Did they use illegal phone hacking, bribes and improper influencing of political figures to get what they wanted?  Were they driven by Emmy awards and sensationalism?  No, what they wanted was the truth and ultimately they got it, and made a name for themselves with hard work and determination.

1) Yes, the global economy still sucks but newspapers are about news and not always about the bottom line dollar.  Companies have to make money and must satisfy their boards of directors and ultimately their shareholders.  And in this tough economic environment many of these corporations have transitioned their focus to getting leaner, making things more efficient, restructuring their labor force, and greatly raising their revenue at all costs.  In addition, because of the incredible rise of the online world that has increased exponentially over the past few years, it has led to a huge decrease in readership for newspapers that have lost many of their tried and true customers to this digital juggernaut.  Many publications have gone the way of the do-do bird because of this competitive landscape (paper vs. internet).  And what has been the result?  A loss of principles, ethics and an overall sense of right and wrong, that could lead to the making of a catastrophic meltdown for one of the big 5 media companies around the globe.

I just hope Newscorp Chairman Mr. Murdoch has stashed away enough of his billions so that his six children won’t have to deal with this mess for years to come.  And to think that this is the same company that owns the Wall Street Journal, one of the most respected publications on the planet.  I guess High School behavior can be had by anyone. 

23 comments:

It's not about the mainstream news that is out there to report. It's who gets that news first! Period!

I disagree with your Top 5 Reasons. The real reason is...

1. Money
2. Money
3. Money
4. Money
5. Money

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