The end of last week saw further upheavals for Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp in London and the US.
In a move that will raise questions over News Ltd’s commitment to its Australian freesheet mX, it announced its intention to close its loss-making The London Paper after just under three years.
And the LA Times reported over the weekend that News Corp’s chief digital officer Jonathan Miller has held talks with the New York Times, the Washington Post, Hearst Corp and Tribune Corp over forming a consortium to charge for news online and on mobile devices.
However, one long time observer of News Corp both in Australia and the UK has predicted that mX will survive the upheavals.
Speaking by satellite, Stephen Brook – a former journalist on The Australian and now deputy editor of Media Guardian in the UK – told Friday’s Future of Journalism debate in Perth: “mX is probably not in as difficult a place as the London Paper, where it was up against London Lite in the afternoon and Metro in the morning. In Australia there’s a lot less competition.
“News has been quite successful at keeping Fairfax out of the free space because of mX, and it’s cost base is quite low. So I think mX is on firmer ground.”