Murdoch drops BSkyB bid amid public, political pressure

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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

File photograph of Rupert Murdoch.
Image: David Shankbone.

News Corporation, owned by Rupert Murdoch, has made the decision to abandon a deal to take full control of broadcasting company BSkyB. The decision came amidst pressure from the British public and politicians, as British parliamentarians from the government and opposition parties prepared to vote in the House of Commons in London to urge Murdoch to drop the deal.

The Murdoch move followed a series of damaging revelations about alleged phone hacking offences by journalists at the News of the World, which published its last edition on July 10. Labour leader Ed Miliband said the decision was "a victory for people up and down this country who have been appalled by the revelations of the phone hacking scandal and the failure of News International to take responsibility".

Chase Carey, the president of News Corporation, said it would be "too difficult to progress in this climate." The corporation "remains a committed long-term shareholder in BSkyB," Carey said in a statement. "We are proud of the success it has achieved and our contribution to it."

Politicians from around the political spectrum have expressed their disapproval on Murdoch over the allegations of phone hacking and praised his decision to drop the deal, with Nick Clegg, the deputy prime minister, saying the decision was "decent and sensible"; while Ivan Lewis, a senior Labour shadow minister, called the decision "a victory for the public of this country."

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