Rupert! Murdoch! Buys! Dow! Jones! Maybe

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At least, that’s what The Business, a reasonably respectable British weekly in the same media family as the Telegraph, is reporting (link via Drudge). Given that the editor of The Business and co-author of the article is Andrew Neil, who was editor of Murdoch’s Sunday Times for 11 years and appears to have stayed on pretty good terms with the big man, I’d say the report is based on something more than rank speculation. On the other hand, the way the article is phrased makes one wonder:

Negotiations have been completed and the board is confident the terms of the deal will be accepted by the Bancroft family, which controls a majority of voting shares in Dow Jones, over the next few days. A formal announcement is expected next week.

Oh, so “the board is confident”? That and $4 will get you a grande latte at Starbucks $12.99 will get you a pound of La Minita Estate Costa Rican coffee from Fresh Direct. Also, Dow Jones is denying that all the i’s are dotted just yet, although of course they’d say that. But whatever. We’re getting there. And once it really happens we will find out what having Rupert Murdoch in charge of the Wall Street Journal really means. I’ve generally been of the he’s-too-smart-to-ruin-it camp. But lots of smart people seem to think this is the end of good journalism as we know it. We’ll see. And if you didn’t know Rupert Murdoch was trying to buy Dow Jones, go back and read Eric Pooley’s cover story.