First, the really big news in the LA Times story about Rupert Murdoch’s plan to start an all new national newspaper for the iPad and mobile devices: The picture shows that he’s not dyeing his hair any more. The orange (or sometimes aubergine) is gone. One of the things Murdoch is said to have most disliked in my book about him is that I made fun of his terrible dye jobs. Now his hair is all white and cut short, just like … well, mine.
Then, a central point that should not be forgotten when Murdoch talks about newspapers and his vision for them in America: He’s never had a paper here that’s worked. Never. Not one. He may be the world’s most successful newspaper man, with a history of outsized reach and profits (though, now, fading) in Australia and the UK, but here, in the US newspaper business, he’s only ever been a dud.