Center for Citizen Media Rotating Header Image

A Better Potential Bidder for Dow Jones


NY Times: G.E. and Pearson Are Said to Study Bid for Dow Jones. The General Electric Company, the parent of NBC, and Pearson, the publisher of The Financial Times, are exploring a joint bid for Dow Jones & Company to rival an offer made by the News Corporation, people familiar with the talks said yesterday.

The journalism coming out of the GE part of this potential deal — from NBC and CNBC — is no great shakes, but the Financial Times is one of the planet’s great newspapers, probably the best in the English language if you need a global economic view.

It’s a near-certainty that Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. would muck badly with the Wall Street Journal. That kind of interference is much less likely with these other bidders, though still possible if the often-terrible journalistic instincts at NBC and CNBC were to take over such a partnership.

So there’s hope, anyway…

UPDATE: The Los Angeles Times got a copy of an editorial-independence proposal from the family that controls Dow Jones to Murdoch, a document the paper calls “unusual in the severity of its prescriptions; stunning in its unspoken assumption of Murdoch’s reflexive bad faith; revealing in that, all that notwithstanding, the Bancrofts correctly saw that the guarantees proposed still were insufficient.”

The Times then listed several of the conditions. But it didn’t publish the actual document, even online.

This is a demonstration of how traditional media organizations persist in failing basic journalism principles in the Web age. If there was a deal with whoever provided the document not to publish it, say so. If not, there is no conceivable reason to keep it from the readers.

(Note: I sold most of my Dow Jones stock last week, on the assumption that Murdoch would end up getting the company. The remaining shares are being transferred as charitable donations.)

Comments are closed.