Boycott of Murdoch begins

Eric Stoner Jul 20, 2011

With the scandal around Rupert Murdoch growing by the day, a full-fledged boycott of News Corp. has been launched on the internet. According to the Washington Post: was registered Sunday, with a plan to convince readers “that Murdoch’s tabloid news media … propagate a false image of the world, exaggerate news stories, and spin an agenda which fits Murdoch’s business interests and highly conservative political outlook.”

Boycott Murdoch Facebook and Twitter pages sprung up, garnering hundreds of followers within days.

While the boycott has recieved coverage on many mainstream news outlets, it has yet to gain much traction. The Facebook page has less than 700 fans and the Twitter page is approaching only 1,000 followers. To make even a small dent in Murdoch’s bottom line, the boycott will need to metastasize and quickly.

One thing that makes a complete boycott of all things Murdoch difficult, is the breadth of his holdings. As NPR explains, if you don’t want any of your money going to Murdoch, here are a few things that would be off limits:

  • You couldn’t go see Brad Pitt and Terence Malick’s new, critically acclaimed art house film The Tree of Life. It’s distributed by Fox Searchlight Pictures, a subsidiary of Fox Filmed Entertainment and NewsCorp. (That means you couldn’t watch Natalie Portman in Black Swan either.)
  • You couldn’t watch any of your favorite sitcoms on the online video site, which is a NewsCorp joint venture with NBC Universal and Disney.
  • You couldn’t watch Dog Whisperer on the National Geographic Channel. (Fox owns a majority share of the network.)
  • You couldn’t read the Wall Street Journal or the New York Post.
  • You couldn’t attend a Los Angeles Lakers or New York Rangers game, since Murdoch has partial ownership in both of those major league sports teams. (He also owns parts of the Staples Center and Madison Square Garden; so no Lady Gaga concerts in the Big Apple either.)
  • You couldn’t watch American Idol on Fox or buy any albums or singles by the winners and contestants of the show. That means you, Crystal Bowersox fans.
  • You couldn’t buy any book published by HarperCollins since NewsCorp owns that company as well. So forget picking up an extra copy of a J.R.R. Tolkien book.
  • If you’re Australian, you couldn’t attend a National Rugby League game, or read GQ Australia.

While this list is only partial, boycotting Murdoch’s empire is far from impossible. It simply would mean making some sacrifices, which is necessary for all nonviolent action, and choosing more carefully which news, entertainment and sports to watch or read.

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