Saturday, June 14, 2008

The `Village Voice' Alternative Media Monopoly's Hidden History--Part 11

(Most of the following article originally appeared in the October 9, 1996 issue of Downtown/Aquarian Weekly. See below for parts 1-10.)

In February 1976, then-Voice editor Tom Morgan chose to publish a previously-classified copy of a House Committee Report On The CIA—the Pike Report—which had been leaked to the Voice by then-CBS News correspondent Daniel Schorr (who later in the 20th century became a reporter for NPR). But then-U.S. Vice-President Nelson Rockefeller’s son-in-law, Morgan, shortly afterwards decided to resign as Voice editor in September 1976. So Felker next brought in a then-Rolling Stone magazine editor from the outside, Marianne Partridge, to manage his stable of Voice writers.

Australian global media baron Rupert Murdoch then figured it was an appropriate time to gobble-up New York magazine and the Voice [before eventually deciding to purchase the U.S. television stations of Metromedia in the late 1980s and set up a fourth television network, Fox Television, and a right-wing propaganda cable broadcasting organization, Fox News], apparently to reduce expected local media criticism of the way he planned to abuse power as the new foreign owner of the previously-liberal New York Post daily newspaper. Using about $6 million of his recently-acquired New York Post’s general funds and about $1.5 million of his Australian-based News America Company general funds, Murdoch gained control of both New York magazine and the Voice in January 1977, for an eventual cost of about $25 million.

The right-wing Australian global media baron then reached an out-of-court settlement with his former friend, Clay Felker, after Felker went to court to try to block Murdoch’s takeover of the Voice between 1977 and 1985. Since Felker, personally, didn’t own the majority of stock in the then-merged New York magazine/Village Voice company during the New York Magazine/Clay Felker Era (in which Felker took home a salary of $120,000 per year in 1970s money for being the Voice’s executive editor), Felker couldn’t stop the majority of New York magazine/Voice stock from being sold to Rupert Murdoch by twelve other stockholders during the late 1970s.

(Downtown/Aquarian Weekly 10/9/96)

Next: The Village Voice Alternative Media Monopoly’s Hidden History—Part 12