From the July 7 edition of NBC's Today:
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From the July 6 edition of Current's Countdown with Keith Olbermann:
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From the July 6 edition of MSNBC's Martin Bashir:
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From the July 6 edition of CNN Newsroom:
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From the July 6 edition of MSNBC's The Daily Rundown:
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In a statement issued today, the Press Complaints Commission of London unanimously condemned News Corp.'s News of the World over the phone-hacking scandal that has sparked outrage across the country.
The PCC, which is charged with reviewing complaints against the press, also renounced its 2009 report on phone hacking that had found News of the World had not misled the commission in an earlier 2007 review of the issue.
The statement is below:
Statement from the PCC on phone hacking following meeting today
At its regular meeting today, the Press Complaints Commission discussed the admissions of the News of the World of its involvement in the hacking of the telephone of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler in 2002. There have been similar claims made in regard to other victims of crime and tragedy.
The Commission's members, both public and editorial, were unanimous in their condemnation.
The Commission was very clear that this conduct was unacceptable and self-evidently undermined assurances given to the PCC by News International in the past. It, therefore, recognises that it can no longer stand by its 2009 report on phone hacking and the assertions made in it.
At the beginning of this year, the PCC established a Phone Hacking Review Committee. It will continue to work actively, and will establish protocols across the industry to improve standards in the future.
The PCC readily accepts its responsibility, shared with others, to ensure that events of this sort should never happen again. To that end, it agreed that public members of the Commission will lead a review of all aspects of press regulation in its current form, which will be designed to ensure that public confidence is enhanced. The Commission will wish to review its own constitution and funding arrangements, the range of sanctions available to it, and its practical independence.
The Chairman of the PCC today said:
"We welcome the announcement by the Prime Minister of his proposed inquiries. The PCC is determined to identify necessary reforms that will guarantee public confidence in press regulation. Already, the PCC provides a free public service that helps thousands of people every year.
There is currently a major police investigation, which has the necessary powers of investigation and resources to identify the perpetrators of these criminal acts. However, the Commission is determined to play its part in bringing to a conclusion this shocking chapter, which has stained British journalism, and to ensure that good comes out of it."
As regard to the debate in Parliament today, the Chairman added:
"The status quo is clearly not an option, and we need to identify how the model of an independent PCC can be enhanced best to meet these challenges. Hence the action we have taken today".
An "influential website for parents" has canceled a contract with U.K. broadcaster Sky -- which Rupert Murdoch partially owns, and is seeking to fully acquire -- following allegations that Murdoch's News of the World tabloid hacked the voicemails of a slain teen girl, potentially impeding a police investigation and giving the girl's family false hope that she was still alive.
The Telegraph reported:
Mumsnet, the influential website for parents, announced that it had cancelled a contract with Sky, which is part of the Murdoch media empire. The group removed the broadcaster's advertisements from its website after an outcry from members of the discussion forum over the Milly Dowler allegations.
The contract was believed to have been worth about £30,000 to Mumsnet but Justine Roberts, co-founder of the group, said she did not think it was right to "take the Murdoch shilling" while investigations continued into phone hacking at the newspaper.
"Sky were running an ad campaign and our members have been very active in talking about the News of the World," she said. "I have rarely seen anything where they have been quite so unanimously appalled. We have taken the decision to remove that ad campaign from our website."
Brand Republic noted that Mumsnet's decision to cancel advertising promoting Sky's services "is the first example of contagion between News of the World and other Rupert Murdoch-controlled media organisations." The Guardian wrote that Mumsnet's actions are "one indication of the wider impact the phone hacking scandal is having on News International beyond the News of the World."
From the July 6 edition of Fox & Friends, during which Fox repeatedly aired images of Media Matters' website:
From the July 5 edition of Current's Countdown with Keith Olbermann:
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A July 5 Financial Times editorial called on News Corp. chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch to "immediately appoint an independent figure" to investigate allegations that his News of the World tabloid hacked and deleted voicemails of murder victim Milly Dowler, impeding a police investigation and giving her family false hope that she was still alive.
The Financial Times wrote:
Senior managers at the UK subsidiary should be held responsible for what happened on their watch. The idea - assiduously peddled for a long time by News Corp - that the hacking was the work of a "lone wolf" was never credible. Indeed as the allegations mount up, what is emerging is an industrial-scale operation where, in many cases, it was the first resort of journalists pursuing a story to engage the so-called "dark arts" of the private investigator and phone hacker. In these circumstances, the idea that bosses did not know what went on would be a poor excuse even if one accepted it.
Mr Murdoch must set aside personal loyalties and remove those executives with any involvement in the affair - whether through their role as editors or at a corporate level. That includes those responsible for handling the company's response. For a start, Rebekah Brooks, the chief executive of News Corp's UK operations, should go. Assuming the allegations are correct, as the editor of the News of the World when Ms Dowler's phone was hacked, her position is untenable. Although she has pleaded ignorance, the final responsibility was hers.
But it is no longer enough just to dismiss people. The affair has inflicted great reputational damage on News Corp. This should be of concern not just to Mr Murdoch but also to the company's wider shareholder base. After all, the group is seeking to expand its UK interests massively with the acquisition of the broadcaster, BSkyB.
Following allegations that News of the World hacked the 13-year-old murder victim's voicemail, Ford Motor suspended all advertising with the paper, and several other companies -- including T-Mobile -- are reportedly considering following suit.
News of the World has previously admitted it intercepted cell phone messages, and has paid damages in some cases. Reportedly thousands of people -- including celebrities, politicians, and royals -- may have had their phones targeted by the paper.
March 21, 2002, should have been an ordinary day for Milly Dowler. The 13-year-old English girl was headed home from school, and had called her father that afternoon to let him know she was on her way.
She never made it.
A high-profile search fueled by the media followed her disappearance, and Milly's parents and friends repeatedly left messages on her cell phone, desperate to hear from her.
Six months later, Milly's remains were found dumped in the woods 25 miles from her home. Her badly decomposed body was naked, and had not been buried.
It took nine years to convict her murderer, Levi Bellfield, a serial killer who targeted schoolgirls. Just weeks ago, he was sentenced to life in prison for abducting and murdering Milly.
Yet the case took another cruel twist yesterday, when the Guardian reported that Rupert Murdoch's News of the World tabloid -- currently under fire for allegedly hacking into the voicemails of celebrities, politicians and royals -- also hacked Milly's phone after she disappeared, apparently in search of juicy exclusives. Even worse, Murdoch's "journalists" deleted messages from Milly's phone "in order to free up space for more messages," according to the Guardian, giving the family false hope that their daughter was still alive and impeding the police investigation.
The ongoing phone hacking scandal at Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. takes another odd turn with the news that a News Corp. executive (and former editor) may have had her phone hacked by a private investigator working for a News Corp. newspaper. In an interesting side note, Sky News -- whose largest shareholder is News Corp. -- initially broke this story.
Rebekah Brooks, the chief executive of News International and former editor of The Sun, has been shown evidence suggesting her phone was hacked more than 20 times by a private investigator employed by another Rupert Murdoch title, it emerged last night.
News International confirmed the 43-year-old media executive met detectives last week from Operation Weeting - Scotland Yard's third investigation into phone hacking - to see records showing she was targeted by Glenn Mulcaire, the private detective employed by the News of the World to eavesdrop on the voicemails of numerous public figures.
The alleged hacking took place between 2005 and 2006, when Ms Brooks, who is also a former editor of the NOTW, was in charge of The Sun, and raises the question of whether Mr Mulcaire was at the centre of an effort by Britain's top-selling Sunday newspaper to spy on its daily stablemate.
The revelation that Ms Brooks was a likely repeated target for Mr Mulcaire was made by Sky News, whose largest shareholder is Mr Murdoch's News Corp. In a blog, the broadcaster's City editor, Mark Kleinman, suggested the hacking could also have been done by the private investigator on behalf of a rival newspaper.
A British attorney representing potential victims in the phone hacking scandal that continues to rock Rupert Murdoch's News of the World claims that as many as 7,000 people may have had their phone messages intercepted.
Another attorney involved in the case, who dubbed the unraveling story "Rupert Murdoch's Watergate," claims legal damages could end up costing Murdoch's company $70 million.
From The Independent [emphasis added]:
The phone hacking scandal took another dramatic turn yesterday when a leading lawyer claimed that up to 7,000 people may have had their phone messages intercepted by the News of the World.
As the paper's owner News International was engulfed by a torrent of fresh claims and condemnation, after the paper's public apology for "voicemail interception" in 2004-2006, Charlotte Harris suggested many public figures suing for breach of privacy would not settle quickly or cheaply.
Another lawyer estimated that the total legal bill facing the paper's owner, News International, could reach £40m, double the amount the company is thought to have set aside. Rod Dadak described the paper's apparent mass hacking of mobile phones as "Rupert Murdoch's Watergate". "It's a black hole," said Mr Dadak, of Lewis Silkin, who acts for potential litigants. "£20m may be substantially too little, it could be double that."
Meanwhile, UK's Guardian alleged Murdoch used his political influence to try to get Labour Party leaders to back off further investigations into the hacking scandal.
Is there any part of Rupert Murdoch's media empire not embroiled in controversy?
The New York Times Magazine has an explosive report detailing how reporters at News of the World -- a Murdoch property and Britain's largest tabloid -- were found to have hacked the phones of Royal family members and those of their inner circle last year.
The piece by Don Van Natta Jr., Jo Becker, and Graham Bowley is a must read and includes some startling background on the year-old scandal (emphasis added):
As Scotland Yard tracked [News of the World reporters Clive] Goodman and [Glenn] Mulcaire, the two men hacked into Prince Harry's mobile-phone messages. On April 9, 2006, Goodman produced a follow-up article in News of the World about the apparent distress of Prince Harry's girlfriend over the matter. Headlined "Chelsy Tears Strip Off Harry!" the piece quoted, verbatim, a voice mail Prince Harry had received from his brother teasing him about his predicament.
The palace was in an uproar, especially when it suspected that the two men were also listening to the voice mail of Prince William, the second in line to the throne. The eavesdropping could not have gone higher inside the royal family, since Prince Charles and the queen were hardly regular mobile-phone users. But it seemingly went everywhere else in British society. Scotland Yard collected evidence indicating that reporters at News of the World might have hacked the phone messages of hundreds of celebrities, government officials, soccer stars -- anyone whose personal secrets could be tabloid fodder. Only now, more than four years later, are most of them beginning to find out.
As of this summer, five people have filed lawsuits accusing News Group Newspapers, a division of Rupert Murdoch's publishing empire that includes News of the World, of breaking into their voice mail. Additional cases are being prepared, including one seeking a judicial review of Scotland Yard's handling of the investigation. The litigation is beginning to expose just how far the hacking went, something that Scotland Yard did not do. In fact, an examination based on police records, court documents and interviews with investigators and reporters shows that Britain's revered police agency failed to pursue leads suggesting that one of the country's most powerful newspapers was routinely listening in on its citizens.