The life of Rupert Murdoch has been filled with controversy since he inherited News Limited newspaper from his father in 1953. His businesses in the media started with acquisition of newspapers in New Zealand and Australia. Murdoch has a keen eye for business, which he used for expansion into the United Kingdom and US markets. Murdoch is feted as being the inventor of the modern tabloid. The main selling point for Rupert Murdoch’s publications is the coverage of scandals and other eye-catching headlines (Taibbi, 2011).
Murdoch has also been accused of political manipulation in Australia due to his ties to the national party in Australia. In his newspaper, the Australian, Murdoch was observed to take the side of McEwen, which caused conflict between the two partners in the coalition. Some of the articles published in the Australian presented a threat to the coalition government. Murdoch’s involvement in political affairs in Australia has been a source of controversy to the point that he avoids making political comments in public. He was accused by Kevin Rudd, Australian Prime Minister, in 2009 of running political vendettas against him. This was because of the comments made about the policies implemented by the Prime Minister. Murdoch deemed the expansionary policies implemented by the Prime Minister as being unnecessary.
Murdoch is known to pursue both business and political motives in the countries he conducts business. In the United Kingdom, in the 1980s and 90s, his publications were in support of Margaret Thatcher. After the end of Thatcher’s era, Murdoch became a supporter of Tony Blair and the Labor Party. Meetings between Murdoch and the Prime Minister to discuss issues of national significance became a significant political issue in Britain. Murdoch can be viewed as a nationalist who believes in the ability of the media to influence policy and improve the welfare of the country. His political activities in the UK, Australia and the United States show that he has an interest in the affairs of the country and tries to influence them. Therefore, Murdoch’s critics have misunderstood his intentions for getting involved in politics, and the way he runs his enterprises.
The most recent scandal involving the business mogul involves a phone hacking scandal by his UK newspaper News of the World. For most of the time, Murdoch has been a source of fear for the British politicians. During the hearing for these accusations, Murdoch was not as intimidating as previously presumed by the politicians. The scandal led to questions about his business approach and failures. The scandal was a contrast in the perception and ideas of the people about his ethical and business standards. Risk and ambition have been the main driving forces in his quest and rise to high standards in business.
His use of appealing headlines and catchy stories enabled the Adelaide News Paper to beat competitors such as the Adelaide Herald. Murdoch utilized the tactic of getting the best journalists from other newspapers in Australia to enable the Daily Mirror, which he bought from Fairfax gain popularity in the market. This tactic was necessary because Fairfax had sold the Mirror to him after running it down as a move to drive him out of business. In is 30s, Murdoch was never taken seriously in the media or in politics, which gave him the motivation to utilize the gap in the market to get his voice heard. It took a lot of determination and persistence for Murdoch to build his business and achieve success in the media.