James Murdoch Steps Down From News International

Today it was announced that James Murdoch, son of media mogul Rupert Murdoch, is resigning as the executive chairman at News International, the UK publishing arm of his father’s News Corp. Despite this, Murdoch the younger will continue to work for News Corp.

Murdoch will shift his focus to News Corp’s international TV business, possibly stepping-down due to scrutiny faced during the phone hacking scandal involving News Corp properties. Murdoch had previously relocated to News Corp’s New York headquarters.

“We are all grateful for James’ leadership at News International and across Europe and Asia, where he has made lasting contributions to the group’s strategy in paid digital content and its efforts to improve and enhance governance programs,” said Murdoch the elder of his son. “He has demonstrated leadership and continues to create great value at Star TV, Sky Deutschland, Sky Italia, and BSkyB. Now that he has moved to New York, James will continue to assume a variety of essential corporate leadership mandates, with particular focus on important pay-TV businesses and broader international operations.”

News Corp, parent company to 20th Century Fox, FOX News, and many others, has been staring down a lot of controversy lately. First the voicemail hacking scandal, and more recently, allegations that the Sun magazine made a practice of paying corrupt officials for information. Despite all of this, company officials have tightly held together with a fairly impressive poker face. The stepping-down of James Murdoch, who you may remember as his father’s mouthpiece, giving evidence in the House of Commons in central London on the News of the World phone-hacking scandal, could be a minor shift or a major upset for the company.

Do you think James Murdoch should have resigned?