You have to be a certain kind of bloke
to happily profit from putting topless women on page three of Britain’s
biggest selling newspaper, but Rupert Murdoch still has no qualms about
doing this in The Sun. It provides an interesting quandary
for some women when offered employment by News Corporation, a company
that doesn’t exactly have a reputation for championining the cause of
the fairer sex.

On Thursday we reported that the most senior
women at News Corp, Fox Entertainment president Gail Berman, had just
defected to Paramount. But this has raised the question of exactly who
are the other top female executives inside the world’s most
international media company.

Given that Rupert is noted for
promoting his sons ahead of his daughters, and for not having a woman
on the News Corp board since second wife Anna departed the scene in
1998, there are actually a surprisingly high number of women in
powerful positions within the company. We’ve done some googling and
searching of the News Corp website and reckon these names spring to
mind when thinking of Rupert’s female executives in similar positions
of power to Gail Berman:

  • Michelle Guthrie: the Australian who replaced James Murdoch as CEO of STAR TV out of Hong Kong;
  • Dana Walden: President Twentieth Century Fox Television;
  • Dawn Airey: Sky Networks CEO under James Murdoch in London;
  • Jane Friedman: HarperCollins CEO;
  • Anthea Disney: Executive vice president for content at News Corp and chairman of Gemstar-TV Guide
  • Rebecca Wade: Editor of the London Sun (and the person who currently selects the page-three girls?)

Maybe
it’s just the Australian division that has a problem with women? Jeni
Cooper may have been given a free Porsche for boosting circulation of The Sunday Telegraph, but she’s a fair way down the tree in a company dominated by blokes.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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