This week saw the release of Dial M for Murdoch: News Corporation and the Corporation of Britain, written jointly by Labour MP Tom Watson and The Independent’s Martin Hickman. The book was launched this morning at a press conference in which Watson called the Murdoch empire a “toxic institution that has operated in Britain like a shadow state”. Predicted to be the “one of the most attacked books this year”, the title and publication date were kept a complete secret until Monday. Published by Penguin, the book is on sale for £20. Reviews say that the book gives a detailed and researched account of the phone hacking scandal just in time for Murdoch’s appearance at the Leveson inquiry next week.
The exhibition ‘News International Wapping – 25 Years on’ opens today in Liverpool marking 25 years since the sacking of 5,500 newspaper print workers during the bitter 1986 dispute between Rupert Murdoch and the print unions.
Occurring at a time when jobs, conditions and union organisation were being undermined in newspaper industry, it showcases the 13-month struggle the employees staged to try to save their jobs and protect their union rights.
Using the recent News of the World scandal as a poignant example of how corrupt newspapers can be and the damage they can cause, Paul Finegan, Unite’s regional secretary, stressed how important it was for Government to be aware “of the dramatic and negative impact on jobs that morally corrupt newspaper tycoons, working together with a government that are intent on reducing the rights of working people and their unions can have.”
When: From Monday, 19 to 30 September
Where: Unite, Jack Jones House, 2 Churchill Way, Liverpool L3 8EF
It has been revealed that several firms working on the Olympic site, including Sir Robert McAlpine who is building the stadium, were subscribed members of the Consulting Association which is accused holding sensitive information on 3,213 workers. This information came to light after a raid by the Information Commissioners Office.
Contract journal writes
‘Union leaders are demanding the Olympic 2012 site is purged of all blacklists held on construction workers.
Olympic Stadium builder Sir Robert McAlpine is believed to have spent nearly £30,000 last year alone on information to vet potential employees.
He said: “On the basis that many of the employers concerned will be winning billions of pounds worth of public and private sector work, the government should announce an immediate investigation into the practices that exist in the industry.”‘