OLD Media Moves

How Dow Jones will help the new Fox Business Channel

June 26, 2007

Posted by Chris Roush

Marketwatch media columnist Jon Friedman calls News Corp.’s $5 billion offer to acquire Dow Jones & Co., the parent of The Wall Street Journal, almost a done deal now that the two sides have agreed to editorial safeguards preventing CEO Rupert Murdoch from meddling in the journalism at the paper.

Jon FriedmanSo, Friedman says, it’s time to look at how the Journal will help Murdoch launch the Fox Business Channel.

Friedman wrote, “Since the news of the News Corp.-Dow Jones talks broke on May 1, I’ve been intrigued by the potential battle to come on cable television. News Corp. has maintained that it will roll out the business channel by the fourth quarter of this year.

“I’ve suspected that Murdoch and his Fox chief, Roger Ailes, wanted to have Dow Jones on their side as a content driver by the middle of summer. That way, Fox could begin making serious decisions about programming. For the moment, Murdoch may have to deal with the Journal’s history of providing content to CNBC.

“Presumably, Fox is counting on The Wall Street Journal to show the world it can deliver serious and credible financial news. It’s one thing for TV networks to report on Anna Nicole Smith and Paris Hilton, and another to win over the trust of investors.

“The Journal reeks of respectability. The newspaper’s great strength is its ability to apply the same high standards to a seemingly mundane earnings story as to a front-page ‘leader.’ It approaches every pursuit with a quest for excellence, from its news sections to its online products. In a little more than a decade, the Journal’s online component has amassed nearly 1 million subscribers.”

Read more here.

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