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Miriam Steffens
April 16, 2009

RUPERT MURDOCH has stepped up his cost-savings push across News Corp’s media empire to blunt the effects of the advertising recession, creating a new unit to let the company’s newsrooms around the world share content and resources to cut costs.

The media mogul has appointed John Moody, a senior editorial executive at his Fox News network, to oversee a company-wide portal that will pool news stories from its various TV stations and print newsrooms.

Mr Moody will report directly to Mr Murdoch and work with News Corp’s news chiefs worldwide “to improve news gathering efficiencies and identify areas of cost savings,” the company said.

The move will see newsrooms of papers such as The Australian and The Daily Telegraph share stories with The Wall Street Journal in New York, The Times in London and the Fox News television network. While many of the publications are already sharing copy, the content portal is expected to formalise and intensify co-operation across the company’s news outlets.

A spokesman for News in Sydney, Greg Baxter, said he didn’t expect the content sharing push would result in job losses or the closure of foreign bureaus, saying it was more likely to target savings by cutting back on external suppliers.

As part of his brief, Mr Moody will review the company’s worldwide contracts with newswires. His appointment comes two months after Mr Murdoch signalled more cost cuts for the company, with “the worst global economic crisis” since he started building his media empire expected to lead to a 30 per cent fall in profits this year.

While Mr Murdoch has said there was no job-cut edict in Australia, it’s understood there have been redundancies at its regional, community and metropolitan newspapers.

http://business.smh.com.au/business/murdoch-pools-newsrooms-to-cut-costs-20090415-a7j7.html

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