The 80-year old media tycoon Rupert Murdoch has kept his place as the head of his empire despite the annual meeting that started with many investors looking to oust him.
Media outlets have been buzzing about the vote of no confidence that Murdoch and his two sons were inspiring from angry investors. However, at the end of it all, Rupert Murdoch kept his position as chairman and had his sons, James and Lachlan, re-elected as directors.
At the beginning of the meeting, Murdoch stated his determination to fix what had been broken at News Corp. He also emphasized that the company must be ethical to counter both the fair criticism and unfair media attacks it has been receiving.
However, while he began the meeting with a conciliatory message, he defiantly answered questions throughout the entire 75-minute meeting.
Questions centred on News Corp’s corporate governance and recent allegations of a fresh computer hacking scandal. Murdoch is said to have fought all of the angry criticism, especially those individuals that proposed to kick him out of the chairman’s seat and remove him as CEO.
Around 150 people were in attendance inside the Zanuck Theatre in Los Angeles, with around 100 more gathered outside in protest. The protesters held signs that signaled their beliefs about “big media,” and how Rupert Murdoch is being treated as above the law.
Among those who attended the meeting to bandy words with Murdoch were member of parliament Tom Watson, and Stephen Maybe, a pension fund representative from Australia.
Watson appeared at the meeting as a representative of labour group AFL-CIO, which held 1,669 shares of stock without voting rights. He was one of Murdoch’s biggest antagonisers.
He brought up the fact that News Corp is in danger of investigations by the Serious Organised Crime Agency because of the actions of at least three private investigators.
In response, Murdoch said he would “stop at nothing to get to the bottom” of the allegations.
He also bantered with his opponents in between fierce defences of his station, saying that his own Fox Business channel was giving his opponents airtime because of their “Fair and balanced” slogan and reputation.