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June 28, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

This is the day (Friday) that News Corp officially splits in two — with its entertainment assets, including its 20th Century Fox studio and Fox Television Network, being grouped under the brand name 21st Century Fox and its newspaper and publishing assets, including the Times of London, the tabloid London Sun, and the New York Post, the Wall Street Journal and Harper-Collins Publishers being reassembled under the old News Corp brand. In an interview with the London Financial Times, Robert Thomson, the CEO of the new News Corp, predicted that all of the newspapers will be transformed into digital “platforms” within two years. “Some of the most successful recent [Internet] start-ups are basically ersatz tabloid journalism,” he told the FT. “If we can’t do it better than they can, then we’re not as good as we think we are.” Also on this day, a British appeals court rejected an appeal by five former executives of News Corp’s London newspaper group News International (recently rebranded as News U.K.) to have the charges against them of phone hacking set aside. The five defendants include former News International CEO Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson, the former editor of the now-defunct tabloid News of the World, who went on to become Prime Minister David Cameron’s spokesman until the hacking scandal broke. Their trial is due to take place in September. Oddly, 21st Century Fox, not the new News Corp, will be paying their legal fees and will also be paying the costs of additional litigation involved in the hacking scandal.