An open letter to James Murdoch

Dear James Murdoch,

I’m really, really sorry. Really, I am. I’ve let you down so really terribly badly, and the least I can do is apologise right here and now.

As you so rightly noted, the BBC’s callous ‘dumping’ of content onto the people who paid for it makes it tremendously hard for hard-working media executives like yourself to get by. You toil away, day after day, and yet with little or nothing to show for it. But the truth is, James, it’s not just the BBC frustrating your ability to put a roof over your head. It’s also me.

That’s right. Over the course of my life I’ve been shovelled money by the government. Child benefit, free education, student loans… I’m a tax-funded monster, really, just as bad as the BBC. Under your intelligent and wise definition of the word – which I heartily suggest we adopt unquestiongly – I am an arm of the state.

And what do I turn around and do with this unfair funding advantage? Why, produce this very blog of course! I pour out content here – all for free – which sucks up my readers’ time and interest away from you. Why read The Sun when you can read The Musings of a Red Dalek, indeed?

The BBC – and me – are both total anachronisms. We belong to a bygone age, and we must adapt to a future of unlimited choice and competition by closing ourselves down immediately so as to provide less choice and competition. It might sound severe, but this really is the only way of ensuring that your business model – handed down from father to son in one of those timeless traditions which we must all surely protect and cherish – can remain exactly the same in this so-very-changed world.

The alternative is truly too ghastly to even consider, and I’m glad you came up with the ingenious idea of using George Orwell’s little-known novel 1984 as a warning against the dangers of having the power of the media concentrated in too few hands. Orwell himself, a fervent defender of the unregulated free market, would have well approved.

So battle on, brave James – ever the feisty underdog. I too share your confidence in the power of privatised plurality and I firmly believe you will attract a broad range of supporters in the media world. From The Sun, News of the World, The Times and The Sunday Times to The Wall Street Journal, Sky and Fox – the plucky independent media will stand with you in your hour of need.

And so will I. This will be my last blog thrusted onto the world without appropriate recompense, destroying your very lifeblood. Regular readers should look out for eye-watering annual subscription offers, starting soon.

With very best wishes and – again – my sincerest apologies,

Dominic Self
dominicself.co.uk

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6 Comments on :
An open letter to James Murdoch

  1. Rish says:

    Wow! Congratulations on a fabulous skewering…

  2. DaveL says:

    I am intrigued by your blah blah blah & would like to subscribe to your newsletter & etc.

  3. nickpeters says:

    Great post Dominic. Murdoch is a whiny little bitch.

  4. Not to defend Murdoch at all but there is a valid point to make that the BBC aren’t just providing the content for the people who have paid for it. I think they do with iPlayer as they have some sort of restriction to only allow UK use, but everything else from the BBC online is freely available worldwide (and we as licence payers are paying for that).

  5. Nathan says:

    That isn’t strictly true Richard: the BBC’s international presence is funded by BBC Worldwide; which, for instance, shows ads on the BBC News website, and sells shows to foreign broadcasters. I believe that the BBC makes a net profit from activities abroad.

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