Dow Jones Takes One Step Towards a Sale

Who knew? Apparently the board of Dow Jones is good for something after all:

the WSJ’s Sarah

Ellison is reporting that they’re going to take over the negotiations with

Rupert Murdoch.

It’s clear that there’s enough internal dissent within the Bancroft family

that they’ll never agree to anything without a bit of outside pressure. The

board is the obvious entity to provide that pressure, if only because of the

fact that it does have a substantial family presence, so the Bancrofts aren’t

exactly being left out of the loop.

If the board – including the board’s family representatives – recommends

a deal to the family, it will be very hard, I think, for the family to say no.

Unless, of course, the NYT’s investigation

into Murdoch turns up some serious dirt. Then, all bets are off.

And whither all the bellyaching about editorial independence? I’m sure that

the Dow Jones board and News Corp between them can come up with something impressive-sounding.

But if Murdoch buys a paper, he intends to control it. So don’t expect his hands

to be tied very tightly.

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