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Thursday, 19 January 2012

News International's Crisis of Trust - The Readers

THE MOST damaging allegation to emerge against News International today was that its directors took part in an orchestrated cover-up of criminal wrong-doing and sought to destroy incriminating evidence.

The senior executives stand accused of, "deliberately deceiving investigators and destroying evidence".

If this is the case, we can expect some more very high profile arrests.
News International aren’t even bothering to contest this claim by the lawyers of phone hacking victims, which tells us a lot.
It comprehensively destroys the company’s posturing as New News Int as opposed to Old News Int.
By closing down the News of the World, removing Rebekah Brooks, conducting a witch-hunt against its staff and secretly briefing against them in the manner of the playground coward, it had hoped to do just that.
It tried to pretend it was now a completely different company and nothing to do with the nasty fellows on the News of the World.
But we now learn the same directors who faked this posture were at the same time swimming around in a soup of evidence of criminal activity.
It is this chronic lack of good corporate governance which will hole the ship.
Much more evidence against News International will come in the future.
I worked there from 1988 onwards and I am aware of executives who witnessed practices which would send the share price crashing through the floor.
I expect much of this to come out in industrial tribunals and High Court actions by former members of staff.
But it is the irrevocable loss of trust which could sink it.
Like Jack Profumo doling out gruel at an East End soup kitchen or Richard Nixon on a round of speaking engagements, we may come to accept News International as no more than an interesting but flawed side-show.
But as we would no more think of voting either man back into office, so the readers will never think of trusting News International again.
This is the battle that News International face in the long term and it is one they will lose. The titles will be sold when Murdoch senior passes on – at the latest.
I have spoken to many current senior executives at News International over the past weeks. Many say they cannot get out quick enough. But no one is interested in having them.
I witnessed the coal-mines and shipyards of Sunderland closing down for good after centuries of proud, world famous history in the 1970s and 80s. Many serving and retired workers cried at the time. I now understand where their cries came from. It is a sense of failure that everything you have worked for all your life has suddenly turned to dust and didn’t work out.
News International is like a perfectly formed porcelain cup which has shattered into pieces. In a few years time, it may come back from the invisible menders looking shiny and new. But no one will ever truly feel confident when they sup from it again.


  1. JamesJan 19, 2012 07:18 AM
    Will the whole sink the entire ship (New International) I wonder.
  2. EnigmaticFoxJan 19, 2012 07:46 AM
    And what about you yourself Neville? have you no shame, no conscience, about the way you behaved during your time with News International?
  3. ChazJan 19, 2012 07:49 AM
    Nice piece. But a tad hypocritical given that you were part of the problem rather thhan the detached observer you now present yourself as. Whatever NI have lost in terms of credibility (and I agree with you in every respect on that) so have you.
  4. AnonymousJan 19, 2012 09:04 AM
    Yep, have to agree with Chaz. You say you witnessed things unethical enough to make the share price crash but you (and all the others) went on working there, silently condoning it.
  5. AnonymousJan 19, 2012 11:05 AM
    "I worked there from 1988 onwards..."
    and you didn't know what was going on right under your nose?
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