How Murdoch can get himself out of the mess he’s in

News Ltd, News Corp, News. Take your pick.

Rupert Murdoch is in a major pickle. After spending a lifetime recreating and shaping the global media landscape in his image off the back of a single Adelaide daily you wouldn’t wish on your least favorite son, Murdoch is now watching it all being blown to bits.

Both figuratively and, you know, actually blown to bits. As in kilobits, megabits, gigabits, terabits. As in little kernels of information being processed and reprocessed into meaning at the speed of light.

Exciting for some. Complete and utter freakout for most.

Murdoch first love was newspapers. As a child he sat on his father’s knee at the breakfast table in their Toorak home, rewriting headlines with a red pencil. Rewriting the future over cornflakes.

Made his money by withholding the audience from advertisers and then letting them fight amongst each other to garner attention. Often on the same page.

Add television stations to the mix and Murdoch pretty much held the general public hostage to advertisers. It was a miracle money making machine.

Until the damn internet came along and changed everything.

These days the best way to make money in old media is to sell its stock short. You stand to make more money betting the share price will continue to evaporate.

But I don’t want to sell the Murdoch short. Profiting from the plight of others is a crappy and sleazy way to make money. It’s incredibly short sighted.

I’d rather make money by rewriting the media industry. It’s not hard.

Ultimately media is just gossip. Either high class or low class. Either the Wall Street Journal or some tacky weekly with bloated celebrities without make up on the cover.

News, opinion, conjecture. It’s just gossip.

Rather than waiting for natural disasters, sordid murders or the latest political scandal to happen, Murdoch should create the news.

Murdoch should create a new sport that he owns outright. Not a rugby franchise or soccer broadcasting rights.

A new sport that trumps all the other sports. A new sport that pits city against city, nation against nation, religion against religion. A new sport that can supersede war.

Not just hitting a little ball with a stick, not just chasing a bigger ball around a field. A new sport so exhilarating to watch that it becomes addictive.

A new sport so riveting that it becomes the only thing anyone talks about.

A new sport he can own exclusive copyright and media rights on.

A new sport only his media outlets can report on.

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