Murdoch: Central Casting's Version Of A Media Exec?
If God envisioned a media executive, it might be Rupert Murdoch. But, realistically, any big in-your-face vision would probably come from central casting.
Murdoch is a character, to be sure, which makes for great TV entertainment, intrigue, and drama. All that and more is why Bloomberg TV is running a special this week on Rupert Murdoch, the chairman/CEO of News Corp.
Urban legend has it Murdoch did his first NFL deal in the mid-1990s on the back of a napkin at a restaurant. Other deals were supposedly done that way as well -- or with even more flair and daring. More impressive was when Murdoch would overbid, sometimes wildly, irrespective of what it would specifically mean to his company's next earnings report. All that was done to feed his "vision".
Other executives talk about Murdoch's ensuring of modern technology for his personal chores -- like email, tweeting, and the Internet in general -- all of which is interesting when it comes in the face of Fox's growing array of digital media assets. For example, the good, the bad, and the yet-to-be-determined: Hulu, MySpace, and The Daily.
Just like on TV, in real-life business we want our central characters to be bigger than life. Does God have it a hand in it, as Ron Grover of Bloomberg BusinessWeek coins it for Murdoch? I'm guessing it might be a more accurate picture drawn out by a TV/business marketing executive.
Think sales. Maybe the bigger issue is whether Murdoch's long-time, out-of-the-box business media savvy continues to be a good selling point for investors, business partners, and ultimately consumers.
Are we thinking about Murdoch when watching "American Idol," Fox News, or "Rescue Me," or when reading The Wall Street Journal or the New York Post? Not really. We all know -- or think we know -- the man and what he stands for. But that has seemingly changed with time.
In the end we just want to be entertained or informed. We aren't really wondering if our participation is lining the pockets of a high-powered, larger-than-life, media executive. Then again, if God did have a hand in it, I think we might reconsider.