James Murdoch has announced that Sunday’s edition of the British tabloid News of the World will be its last.
Murdoch, son of Rupert Murdoch and the Deputy Chief Operating Officer of News Corporation which operates NotW, was the one to break the news to the paper’s staff, saying that after consulting with senior employees, “I have decided that we must take further decisive action with respect to the paper.”
The 168-year-old tabloid has been under the microscope after it was revealed that they’d hired a private investigator who then hacked into the voicemail of murdered 13-year-old Milly Dowler and deleted messages to make way for new, incoming voicemails. This was not only creepily invasive, but the move also gave Milly’s family and friends hope that she was still alive. And while this wasn’t the first time News of the World‘s phone-hacking tactics had been revealed; among others, members of the royal family had their phones hacked and actress Sienna Miller has successfully sued the tabloid for hacking into her cellphone. The particularly despicable nature of the Milly Dowler case enraged just about everyone, from the media to the police. According to Murdoch, two major criminal investigations are now focused on News of the World.
Though after Thursday’s announcement, there will no longer be a News of the World to focus on. Murdoch, suggesting that the scandal had simply become far too large and unwieldy for News Corp. to deal with, said of the shuttering: “The good things the News of the World does, however, have been sullied by behaviour that was wrong. Indeed, if recent allegations are true, it was inhuman and has no place in our Company.” He also added that they would cooperate with any ongoing investigation.
While Murdoch also addressed the “price loyal staff at the News of the World are paying for the transgressions of others,” he made no mention of NotW‘s former editor Rebekah Brooks’s immediate future. Brooks has gone on to become one of Rupert Murdoch’s chief executives, though there have been repeated calls for her resignation for her connection with the hacking scandal. For James Murdoch’s full announcement, click here. (via Guardian)
(PHOTOS: Media Mogul Rupert Murdoch)