Today might be a momentous one in the unfolding drama that embraces News Corporation, phone hacking by journalists, police bribery, corruption and who knows what else as Rupert Murdoch and son James face a Parliamentary select committee investigating events that make up this scandal.
Expectations look to be very high indeed that the Murdochs and ex-News International executive Rebekah Brooks might "come clean" in their questioning by the committee. Indeed, clamours for them to "tell the truth" are overwhelming.
If you’ve seen the 1992 film A Few Good Men, you can’t help but be reminded of the memorable scene in the courtroom when the Jack Nicolson military character is grilled by the Tom Cruise lawyer character. I won’t spoil the outcome if you haven’t seen it; even if you have, take a look at this clip:
(If you don’t see the video embedded above, view it at YouTube.)
Is this what we’ll see this afternoon? Wishful thinking by many might suggest a possibility (I can’t imagine it, though). Will the Murdochs "come clean" as Paul Holmes calls for? Will they refuse to answer questions today but commit to actively doing so in formal investigation procedures and so suffer an immediate PR disaster as David Corker suggested on BBC Radio 4′s Today programme early this morning. Corker was legal counsel to Kevin Maxwell and Ian Maxwell, the sons of Robert Maxwell, in the early 1990s.
Or might the events and the outcome be something else entirely?
We’ll soon find out – live TV, radio and online coverage will blanket us when the committee starts at 2.30pm UK time.
- The Hobson and Holtz Report – Podcast #608: July 18, 2011. Includes discussion on PR practice, ethics and reputation issues surrounding News Corporation and the scandal that began in the UK with the News of The World and phone hacking, and consider the role of Edelman as communication counsel to News Corp.
- Seeing PR sense behind latest News International events