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UPDATE: 3 days to stop Murdoch's media takeover

UPDATE. The News of the World, Rupert Murdoch's most disgusting newspaper (and therefore the most disgusting newspaper in Britain), is to close down because of a hacking scandal. The move seems to be an attempt by Murdoch to clean up his act at a time when the government is about to decide whether he is allowed a total take-over of BSkyB. The opposition to this take-over (see below) should now redouble. See the Guardian article here.

Jeremy Hunt has just said he'll allow Murdoch to own all of BSkyB. We have just three days to flood the government's public consultation with requests to stop the deal.

We've done it before -- in the last consultation Hunt said our avalanche of 40,000 messages delayed the deal as his officials had to read each email carefully, fearing a legal challenge. But the government is pushing the deal through despite the hacking scandal of murdered Milly Dowler -- the latest grim episode that shows how Murdoch's media tramples standards and ignores ethics.

Murdoch already controls more of our media than is legal in many countries – and is notorious for using his power to skew our politics. The official consultation ends this Friday -- let's tell the government we don't want his media empire to control our largest commercial broadcaster. Send a message now -- using your own words to make it stand out -- calling on Jeremy Hunt and David Cameron to refuse Murdoch's BSkyB deal until there's a full Competition Commission review and a full public inquiry into phone hacking.

Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation already owns 40% of British newspapers and 40% of BSkyB, the UK’s largest commercial broadcaster. In the US, Australia and elsewhere this degree of media dominance would not be allowed. News Corporation has admitted responsibility for hacking the phones of politicians and celebrities, and now stands accused of listening to messages of a murdered 13 year old girl. But our government wants to give Murdoch power over half of our media, allowing him to then squeeze out his rivals one by one.

Since November we’ve repeatedly rallied to stop Murdoch. We've sent messages, phoned ministers, done stunts, and funded adverts and legal challenges. Jeremy Hunt says our actions have delayed the deal and persuaded him to make changes to how Sky News will be treated if Murdoch takes over BSkyB. He's had to hire extra lawyers and is nervous about a battle in the courts. We're making an impact, but the conditions Hunt plans to put on the takeover won't work, as Murdoch regularly runs rings round regulators. Now is the moment to stand up for our media and our democracy and build pressure on the government. Let's send messages calling on Jeremy Hunt and David Cameron to refuse Murdoch's BSkyB deal until the deal has been reviewed by the Competition Commission and a full judge led public inquiry into the hacking scandal is conducted and completed. Send a message now, and encourage your friends to do so.

An independent and diverse media is vital for holding governments to account and should not be in the hands of someone known for unethical journalistic practices and who often seeks favours in return for endorsing politicians and parties. But people power can stop this deal. If we all stand up together now in the UK, we’ll give hope to independent media advocates across the world.

With hope and determination,

Alex, Sam, Brianna, Alice, Ricken, Luis and the whole Avaaz team

More information

Power that threatens both an industry and democracy

News Corp's battle for BSkyB shows global ambition

News Corp/BSkyB deal underlines Murdoch's political clout

Rupert Murdoch: Empire of the Sun

Police to meet NoW executives over Milly hacking claims

Cameron: Dowler phone hack allegations 'truly dreadful'

Read more and send a message



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