A Look At All The Sites Owned By Rupert Murdoch That 'Steal' Content

from the who-ya-gonna-block-now,-rupert? dept

As Rupert Murdoch talks about how he wants to cut off Google, while claiming that aggregator sites are "parasites" and "stealing" from him -- and that fair use would likely be barred by the courts, it seemed like a good time to examine at least some of the sites that are owned by Rupert Murdoch that appear to aggregate content from other sites and which rely on the very same fair use argument. We've mentioned a few in the past, but figured it wouldn't hurt to explore them more thoroughly.

Well, let's start with the flagship Wall Street Journal itself. It integrates its own "aggregator" with headlines and links to other stories. For example, on the WSJ's tech news page if you scroll down, you'll find a bunch of headlines and links to other sources -- without permission:
Oops. Looks like the WSJ is "parasiting" and "stealing" according to Murdoch. Perhaps he should cut them of too.

Okay, how about Fox News itself? Yup. It's got an aggregator as well. Here's its Politics Buzztracker that aggregates and links to stories from a variety of different publications, including the NY Times, the Washington Post, MSNBC and others:
Murdoch can't be too happy about all that thieving.

Then we've got the folks over at AllThingsD, who I actually think do excellent work, and who have built up a nice part of their site called "Voices." I actually quite like this and find it useful (and yes, every so often, they are kind enough to "parasite" one of my posts). In fact, it helps keep AllThingsD in my RSS reader because it's so useful. But, damn, if that doesn't look just like what Murdoch is complaining about. Not only does it have headlines, but also a fair bit of intro text (no summary, no commentary) and even the links are hidden at the bottom, rather than using the headlines as links:
Of course, it's not just with news either. The folks at AlarmClock remind us that Murdoch's News Corp. owns IGN, which has a variety of properties, including the ever popular RottenTomatoes movie review aggregation site. Yes, the entire site is based on "parasiting" (according to Murdoch) movie reviews off of every other site, and pulling them all together:
Good thing Murdoch is planning on working on ways to get the court to ban that sort of "fair use."

Some other IGN sites don't quite have aggregators, but I do find it interesting that they've integrated in Google search, such that you could do searches for things across the web and have them remain in a totally News Corp./IGN-branded experience. Effectively, on these pages, Murdoch's own properties are able to "parasite" back Google's own "parasite" engine. Here are two examples:


I'm sure there are probably more examples of various News Corp. properties regularly doing exactly what Murdoch and other News Corp. execs are now decrying as illegal and which must be stopped. So, it has to be asked, Mr. Murdoch, will you pull down all of these sites?


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Designerfx (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 10:01am

    now I know why fileplanet and gamespy suck

    they're owned by Murdoch. No wonder.

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 10:03am

    kinda scary howmuch is

     

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  3.  
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    Steve (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 10:04am

    gheesh

    Murdoch is too old and out of touch with how these tubes work.

     

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  4.  
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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 10:06am

    Obviously...

    Mr. Murdoch is the company's 'Left Hand' (perhaps left head).

    It appears the left hand is too busy scratching its backside to know what good work the right hand is doing.

    (It would have to be his backside, because he's talking out his a$@)

    -Mike, thank you for good examples.

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Poster, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 10:07am

    Hypocrisy. Isn't it grand?

     

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  6.  
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    Alimas (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 10:42am

    Re: now I know why fileplanet and gamespy suck

    I always knew GameSpy was rotten to the core.

     

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  7.  
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    PRMan, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 10:58am

    Kind of reminds me of Disney...

    Kind of reminds me of Disney's stance on Fair Use...

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 11:06am

    Fox

    Murdoch owns Fox News? No wonder he's such a douche bag hypocrite.

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 11:18am

    Can't spell Ignorance without IGN.

     

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  10.  
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    News nCorpse, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 11:22am

    You left out...

    ...the biggest para-site of all: Fox Nation.

    Fox Nation is built from the ground up to "steal" content from around the web.

    Murdoch is a first-class hypocrite. He can shut down Google's indexing anytime he wants with a simple "disallow" in his robots.txt file. Now he says he will stop Google, but only after he erects his pay wall. Guess what? With a subscription only site, Google can't access his content anyway.

    Idiot!

     

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  11.  
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    Mark Harris (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 11:45am

    Murdoch's master plan?

    He's a wily old bird,rather than a fool, and I wonder if he's got us all going in the wrong direction. While we point and laugh at him and say he "is too old and out of touch with how these tubes work", perhaps he's got a longer game in mind.

    Bear with me. Newspapers around the world watch what Murdoch does and then follow suit. What if his game is to get them all to put paywalls up and isolate themselves, spending fortunes to do so on the promise of exclusive deals and fortunes to come ("why would Murdoch do it if it wasn't going to make money?" they'll say)? Then, when they're committed to the new system, and deeper in debt, News Corp will have a "change of heart", drop the paywalls (that they never actually built) and embrace openness and sharing. Several major papers would go to the wall, and be ripe for takeover by a still cash-rich News Corp.

    Just a thought.

     

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  12.  
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    Gyroc (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:01pm

    Re: Re: now I know why fileplanet and gamespy suck

    Has anyone ever liked game spy? It's crapware

     

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  13.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:29pm

    Re: Murdoch's master plan?

    "("why would Murdoch do it if it wasn't going to make money?" they'll say)?"

    What would Murdoch do?

    WWMD?

    Has an ominous ring to it...

     

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  14.  
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    Mark Harris, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:37pm

    Re: Re: Murdoch's master plan?

    Wily Weapons of Mass Destruction? :-)

     

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    Overcast (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:37pm

    WWMD?

    LOL!!!

    Genius ;)

     

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  16.  
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    Overcast (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:40pm

    Hey - here's a Fox News page that links here - to Techdirt.

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,181204,00.html

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:41pm

    I think you will find that most of the sites they are parasiting from they in fact own or operate.

    Further, the first example is a series of nice text links off and nothing else no first paragraph or anything. It isn't parasiting when the read cannot enjoy the story without visiting the site.

    It's a really nice try to slam Ol' Rupe, but it just makes you look like an Ol' rube.

     

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  18.  
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    guest, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:48pm

    he should go back to the UK and hang out in the old folks home with his girlfriend M.Thatcher

     

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  19.  
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    Dan, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:49pm

    boycott everything from Murdoch

    I already hate Fox. Wish I had a way to watch football without those b*stards.

     

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  20.  
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    xman, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:52pm

    Um, he's Australian BTW.....

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:55pm

    Re:

    Fox owns MSNBC and CNN, every mainstream movie review written, and Engadget? News to me. Ugh, even more sites I have to avoid now.

    Hmm, let's head on over to Google News. Oh no, a headline AND A WHOLE SENTENCE OR TWO! THE HORROR! Why would I ever need to read more than a 2 lines of text to get a news story?

    And by your definition of parasiting...half of the News Corp-owned sites are...still parasiting, and doing it even more than Google News. Oops.

    I just realized that you can rearrange the letters in your name to spell "Terrible Troll." What communist leader is paying your bills? WHY AM I THE ONLY ONE ASKING THESE QUESTIONS!?!?

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 12:57pm

    Re: Re:

    Oops. Should be "News Corp owns..." in the first sentence.

     

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  23.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 1:09pm

    Re:

    I think you will find that most of the sites they are parasiting from they in fact own or operate.

    That is simply not true.

    Further, the first example is a series of nice text links off and nothing else no first paragraph or anything. It isn't parasiting when the read cannot enjoy the story without visiting the site.

    Not particularly different than Google news, which often displays just a link to a story and no summary text.

     

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  24.  
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    Mechwarrior, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 1:12pm

    Re:

    Murdoch said that that is included in "parasiting". He wants absolutely no links to his properties.

     

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  25.  
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    Chronno S. Trigger (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 1:14pm

    Re:

    In the second screen cap, it has three links to Yahoo news with snippets. News corp owns Yahoo news? (to be honest, I don't know, but I doubt it.)

     

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  26.  
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    BobinBaltimore (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 1:19pm

    Re: Murdoch's master plan?

    Strongly agreed.

    Mike has a great point (though FoxNews Buzztracker is dead, as far as I can tell...Mike had to grab and old link on origin2.foxnews.com). Murdoch definitely has some major inconsistencies to deal with.

    That said, he is no one's fool and has turned crap into gold many, many times before. It is silly and historically inaccurate to portray him as quixotic, out-of-touch or stupid. Doesn't mean he hasn't and won't again make a bad call, but it does mean that there is a definite (and most often successful) method to his madness.

     

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  27.  
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    Doctor Strange, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 1:20pm

    Re:

    I didn't go check every Murdoch property, but the examples above do little to convince me there is much "parasiting" going on.

    The Marburgers report characterized parasiting as having enough of the content from an original source on your site to disincentivize people from clicking on the link. It's unclear that headlines meet this standard, so the WSJ example is thin at best.

    The Fox news example "parasites" articles from the AP and AFP. I could not find membership lists for the AP or AFP, but Murdoch is on the AP board. If I understand the AP correctly, it's a cooperative. I do not know whether any Murdoch organizations compensate the AFP.

    AllThingsD has a long page explaining that it is cognizant of the issues with parasiting/scraping and the measures used to maximize the number of people who actually click on the link. There is also a well-documented way to opt-out.

    The RottenTomatoes site has a page where it pretty clearly indicates that the critics on the site must opt-in and meet certain criteria before being aggregated.

    Google freely offers the search on your site feature, and in fact encorages people to use it. It's hard to understand how this is equivalent to parasiting, especially by the Marburger definition: if Murdoch was scraping off Google's ads and such in the result pages to display his own maybe you'd have a point.

     

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  28.  
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    Paul OFlaherty (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 1:34pm

    Re:

    Just goes to show that it's so very easy for him to get up there and moan and complain about all the damage the evil search engines are doing by sending him all that traffic while doing the exact same thing themselves.

    A case of do what I say not what I do?

     

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  29.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 1:36pm

    Re: Re:

    I didn't go check every Murdoch property, but the examples above do little to convince me there is much "parasiting" going on.

    Indeed. I agree. In fact, that's the whole point. Sorry if you missed that.

    The Marburgers report characterized parasiting as having enough of the content from an original source on your site to disincentivize people from clicking on the link.

    Who said anything about the Marburgers? We're using Murdoch's definition.

    The Fox news example "parasites" articles from the AP and AFP.

    No, that's not true. It uses links from the NY Times, the Washington Post and MSNBC. I don't believe Murdoch is on the board of any of those.

    AllThingsD has a long page explaining that it is cognizant of the issues with parasiting/scraping and the measures used to maximize the number of people who actually click on the link. There is also a well-documented way to opt-out.

    Gee... just like that "parasite" Google News.

    Thanks for proving the point, even if you thought you were disproving it.

     

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  30.  
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    Big Al, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 1:37pm

    Re:

    Nice try, but he's actually Australian (God, I hate to admit that!)

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 2:52pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Who said anything about the Marburgers? We're using Murdoch's definition."

    But, you can rearrange the letters in "Mr. Murdoch" to make "Marburgers!" Is it an EVIL AUSTRALIAN SOCIALIST FASCIST PLOT TO TAKE OVER AMERICA'S NEWSPAPERS!? Why am I the only one asking these questions!?

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 3:05pm

    Re:

    I think you will find that most of the sites they are parasiting from they in fact own or operate.

    They "parasite" from lots of sites they don't own.

    Further, the first example is a series of nice text links off and nothing else no first paragraph or anything. It isn't parasiting when the read cannot enjoy the story without visiting the site.

    Gee, that's not exactly how Murdoch looks at it when Google does it.

    It's a really nice try to slam Ol' Rupe, but it just makes you look like an Ol' rube.

    Did you have to use 'lube to get your head that far up Ol' Rupe?

     

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  33.  
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    Yeebok (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 4:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Because you're an idiot ? Australians, generally aren't fascist, communist or evil. Agreed with Big Al, it irks me to admit he's an Aussie too.

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 5:05pm

    Re: Re:

    Often, but not always.

    I think you need to go back and look at the ownerships of the sites... it can be very complex to find out who really owns them.

     

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  35.  
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    Allen (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 5:13pm

    Negotiations

    Murdoch knows search and news have become symbiotic. But he wants a larger slice of the pie. Understanding his starting position is weak he's come out with a threat made credible by his reputation as a septuagenarian autocrat.

    Murdoch and his advisers are not stupid: they know the threat to block their content from google is empty, but they need to start somewhere in their bid for a share of the advertising dollars that google has lured away from them.

    It's just Negotiations.

     

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  36.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 6:11pm

    Re:

    "FOXNEWS.COM HOME > SCITECH"

    Haha that's funny

     

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  37.  
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    Heh, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 6:13pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Which ones - exactly?

    and some form of evidence would be nice

     

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  38.  
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    Everyone but FoxNuts, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 6:19pm

    Re: Negotiations

    Dear Google,

    Please block all of News Corp.

    Thx

     

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  39.  
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    alternatives(), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 6:48pm

    Where is the google-fu gods?

    I now await the scripting and google gods to determine where each of the Rubert owned sites are pulling from, publish a list of the contacts and ask:

    What if these sites cut off Mr. Murdock?

    And include a sample communication, if one was to write asking if they have considered blocking Mr. Murdock's properties.

     

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  40.  
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    Chucklebutte (profile), Nov 11th, 2009 @ 8:44pm

    Really?

    All those sites is murdoch? What else does that prick own?

    Does anyone have a complete list of websites owned by douche corp? Might need to clean up some bookmarks lol.

     

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  41.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 11th, 2009 @ 9:40pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Yes, they own some of them. They don't own all of them, and so your "point" is just an irrelevant red herring.

     

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  42.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 4:02am

    If they own just one of them its a "point", if he didnt own any it would be an "irrelevant red herring".

     

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  43.  
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    jehode, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 4:57am

    Poor Old Rupert!

    Lay off Rupert Murdoch, this great man has forged an empire, first dragging the print world into the 21st century by alienating workers and proudly ignoring working peoples decent rights (Wapping anyone?) and then building up his telemedia empire.
    All this with not one thought about profit, simply a deep love and affection for the world of sport and his audience.
    Not for him the world of buying and selling for profit. I feel sure everything he does is for the greater good of telemedia, society and the world as a whole.
    I'm sure I have the right person dont I?

     

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  44.  
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    Anonymous goat, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 6:22am

    Re:

    He *was* an Australian. To own Fox he had to become a US citizen, and a US citizen only.

    Besides, I don’t wan’t him back.

     

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  45.  
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    Name, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 7:22am

    Re: You left out...

    Gunshot victims can shut down bullets anytime they want with a simple "bullet proof vest" over their body.

     

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  46.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 7:29am

    Re: Re: You left out...

    its bodies

     

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  47.  
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    jmbutton (profile), Nov 12th, 2009 @ 8:22am

    Murdoch's pov

    Don't confuse me with the facts my mind is made up!

     

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  48.  
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    Lee, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 8:32am

    Thanks to that ruddy idiot I can't watch football without breaking my bank account.

     

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  49.  
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    Spurredonindublin, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 9:18am

    Re: Guest 18

    Murdoch is actually an Australian. He changed citizenship to the US because the law prevented foreign ownership of a TV stations

    If you will trade your nationality for money, you are lacking in principles in any case.

     

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  50.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 10:18am

    Re:

    Umm, no. It doesn't matter that they own some, because they're STILL "parasiting" the others regardless of the fact that they own some.

    Red herring. The end.

     

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  51.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 11:00am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I think you need to go back and look at the ownerships of the sites... it can be very complex to find out who really owns them.

    Yah, very few people know this, but Murdoch actually owns Google.

     

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  52.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 11:03am

    Re: Re: Guest 18

    Excuse me, but Murdock "bought" his American citizenship!

     

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  53.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 1:19pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Look, up there, over your head.

     

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  54.  
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    Ernest, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 4:29pm

    Murdoch sites

    Dude, u r awesome for doing this. Rupie & his minions suck!

     

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  55.  
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    Ernest, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 4:47pm

    Re: Murdoch sites

    Ooops, I should say thank u MR. MIKE MASNICK.

     

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  56.  
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    Jr, Nov 12th, 2009 @ 11:43pm

    Re: Murdoch's master plan?

    Right on, Mark.

    But I think its even simpler.

    He is so old and stupid he couldn't possibly afford all the free publicity he is getting for his paywall service changes.

    He just has to act dumb and we all know about it- and not just through his advertising channels...

     

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  57.  
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    Tyler, Nov 13th, 2009 @ 8:11am

    Re: Murdoch's master plan?

    Mark, I had similar thoughts but not as well thought out as your scenario. But I agree entirely that Murdoch isn't as foolish as we think or as foolish as he presents himself. He's definitely up to something. Excellent idea, I think you're on to something for sure. Danny Sullivan posted an interesting article on mashable, might be worth a read, Would Someone Please Explain To News Corp How Google Works?

     

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  58.  
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    Dave, Nov 13th, 2009 @ 1:11pm

    Re: comment by xman(20)

    Murdoch is NOT Australian, he is an Merrikan citizen. Good riddance to him, you can keep him. We don't want him.

     

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  59.  
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    C.C., Nov 13th, 2009 @ 11:04pm

    Obviously if you're profiting off of the very tactics that are "putting you in the hole" then it must be perfectly legal and alright to do. It's a damn shame that society has gotten to the point where whoever can throw the most paper at lawmakers can get whatever they want.

     

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  60.  
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    brucemcf (profile), Nov 15th, 2009 @ 9:58pm

    That's just the fringes of NewsCorp hypocrisy ...

    ... 20th Century Fox's MySpaceCDN servers are among the favorite free streaming hosts for bootleg anime streaming sites. I don't know where MySpaceCDN sits with respect to MySpace, but given that NewsCorp will be out somewhere in the range of $100m ad payment from google due to the drop in traffic in MySpace, it could be speculated that MySpaceCDN is less responsive in cleaning up anime bootlegs than other sites such as Megavideo or Veoh because when the NewsCorp dollars are on the other side of the "pirate bay" issues, then that's just different.

     

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  61.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 16th, 2009 @ 5:45am

    Re: That's just the fringes of NewsCorp hypocrisy ...

    If someone could just find a way for me to block ALL news corp sites , then I will be happy.

     

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  62.  
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    Simon, Nov 27th, 2009 @ 1:35am

    Interesting, yet at the same time irrelevant

    Google and the Internet seemed to doing pretty well before Murdoch and the rest of the newspaper industry decided they needed to try and join in.

     

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  63.  
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    Tim, Dec 5th, 2009 @ 1:54pm

    Think about it..

    you all are participating in the framing of the issue by not questioning the vocabulary chosen. Thats what Murdoch does, he frames ideologies. Wake up people. The real truth to this subject is this: NO ONE OWNS THE DAMN NEWS! All "news" is, is the worlds daily occurances, packaged and delivered. How do you own that?

     

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  64.  
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    Joan, Dec 7th, 2009 @ 10:04pm

    Rupert Merdoch is a BIG Pharma Genocidalist!

    Rupert Murdoch owns the Murdoch Children's Research Institute in Australia that conducts guinea pig swine flu trials on little kids.
    His mother, Elizabeth conducts vax testing on pregnant women at the Victoria Women's hospital in Melbourne. His son James is the the Overseer of Glaxo Smith Kline, He is behind a genocidal scheme to kills us off for population control. Rupert Murdoch is co-chairman for David Rockefeller's partnership for New York City. The partnership is the core of the evil. They were responsible for taking down the WTC to bring about the Patriot Act, and responsible for rebuilding it. Thomas Glocer the CEO of Reuters and the Director of Merck pharmaceuticals is also on the board.
    See FluScamdotcom

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  65.  
    identicon
    Joan, Dec 7th, 2009 @ 10:19pm

    Rupert Merdoch is a BIG Pharma Genocidalist!

    Rupert Murdoch owns the Murdoch Children's Research Institute in Australia that conducts guinea pig swine flu trials on little kids.
    His mother, Elizabeth conducts vax testing on pregnant women at the Victoria Women's hospital in Melbourne. His son James is the the Overseer of Glaxo Smith Kline, He is behind a genocidal scheme to kills us off for population control. Rupert Murdoch is co-chairman for David Rockefeller's partnership for New York City. The partnership is the core of the evil. They were responsible for taking down the WTC to bring about the Patriot Act, and responsible for rebuilding it. Thomas Glocer the CEO of Reuters and the Director of Merck pharmaceuticals is also on the board.
    See FluScamdotcom

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  66.  
    identicon
    Trish, Feb 13th, 2010 @ 7:52am

    Well, let's start with the flagship Wall Street Journal itself. It integrates its own "aggregator" with headlines and links to other stories. Enzyte

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  67.  
    icon
    lrobbo (profile), May 29th, 2012 @ 4:23pm

    Murdoch is a vile man and I'm happy to see things coming to light with his dealing regarding phone hacking and his all too cosy arrangement with Blair. Makes me sick.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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