Rupert Murdoch, the 84-year-old CEO and controlling shareholder of 21st Century Fox, is preparing to step down as CEO of the media giant and hand that title to his son James, according to numerous sources close to the Murdoch family.Murdoch's old News Corporation split into two companies not long ago: 21st Century Fox and News Corp. Fox News is part of 21st Century Fox. So Murdoch's departure means changes for Fox News, right?
No, not really. Here's more from the CNBC story:
... Rupert Murdoch will continue to be the executive chairman of Fox, while his son Lachlan would also become an executive co-chairman of the company.So Murdoch's not really leaving. And:
As part of the management reordering at Fox, its COO, Chase Carey, will step down from that role and take on a yet undefined role as an advisor at the company....So, if anything, Murdoch and his family will be more tightly in control of 21st Century Fox than they are now.
While no one doubts that the elder Mr. Murdoch will still have the final say at whatever goes on at Fox, Carey's stepping down as COO will leave the company without a layer of senior management outside the family for first time.
And, with regard to Fox News, The Hollywood Reporter is now telling us this:
... it appears that the older Murdoch's involvement in Fox News Channel isn't changing.So there you go -- Murdoch and Ailes are still running the place, buddies that they are:
Covering the story on Thursday morning, Fox Business News announced that Fox News chairman and CEO and Fox Television Stations Group chairman Roger Ailes will continue to report directly to Rupert Murdoch and run the top-rated cable news network.
Ailes and the older Murdoch have long had a close relationship, founding the network in 1996 and making it the dominant force in cable news. "If he's in town, the door may open and he'll walk in and plop down. He just hangs out for an hour, wrecks my schedule," Ailes recently said of their working relationship in a THR cover story. "He likes Fox News, so I don't have a lot of business discussions with him."All of which is a shame, because:
Murdoch's sons, James and Lachlan, are known to have differing political views from their conservative father -- and Ailes relationship with the pair is said to be less close. He characterized them as "smart" and "capable," adding "I don't know them very well. I don't interact with them on a daily or even weekly basis."So eventually Fox will change, but not until, at the earliest, 2016:
Ailes current contract is up for renewal in 14 months, just a few months shy of the 2016 election. When recently asked if he'd sign an extension, the 75-year-old replied, "They haven't asked me to."Will Ailes deliver the ratings? Will Ailes get a president elected after failing the last two times out? Will age finally take its toll on Rupert Murdoch and put Fox News fully in the control of his non-right-wing-zealot sons? Time will tell. For now, though, the flow of active spew from Bullshit Mountain will continue unabated.