Thinking Anglicans

News Corporation: Statement from the Church of England's Ethical Investment Advisory Group

The Church of England’s Ethical Investment Advisory Group has issued this statement.

News Corporation: Statement from Ethical Investment Advisory Group

09 July 2011

The Church of England’s Ethical Investment Advisory Group has written to News Corporation.

The following points were made in the letter, sent on Friday 8 July:

The behaviour of the News of the World has been utterly reprehensible and unethical.

While the EIAG welcomes the decision to close the News of the World, this action is not a sufficient response to the revelations of malpractice at the paper. Nor does it address the failure of News International and News Corporation executives to undertake a proper investigation and take decisive remedial action as soon as the police uncovered illegal phone hacking in 2006.

The EIAG Chairman has written to Rupert Murdoch today (8/7/11) to insist that the Board of News Corporation takes all necessary measures to instil investor confidence in the ethical and governance standards of News Corporation.

We cannot imagine circumstances in which we would be satisfied with any outcome that does not hold senior executives to account at News Corporation for the gross failures of management at the News of the World.

Note

The Church Commissioners for England, one of the National Investing Bodies, are the beneficial owners of 344,586 News Corporation A shares worth, at Thursday’s close, $6m.

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Ian BlackPrior AelredMartin ReynoldsPaul BagshawDavid da Silva Cornell Recent comment authors
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A J Barford
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A J Barford

Murdoch’s stranglehold over our democracy for decades and only now are questions being raised as the share price nose-dives Enron-style?

JPM
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JPM

Is it too much to hope that Murdoch’s evil empire is about to collapse?

Keith
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Keith

I have to question the wisdom of announcing any potential action in the city in advance, someone really does not know what they are doing!

Secondly as a Christian I’m disgusted that the Church Commissioners for England has $6m invested in “The Sun.” That is more disgraceful and I think that there should be an enquiry as to why such an investment was made originally?

David da Silva Cornell
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David da Silva Cornell

They actually *welcome* the closure of NotW?! Notwithstanding that the closure scapegoats the innocent bulk of the employees, sacrificing their livelihood while sparing the top executives who actually bear the responsibility?

Confusing ethical calculus from this C of E body, this is — although in recent years that is not entirely surprising.

Paul Bagshaw
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Clearly the ethical standards of the Church of England follow the pack.

The actions of the News of the World are not new nor only just revealed; it’s the extent and particular targets of phone hacking that are now headline news. Payments to the police and other illegal payments for confidential information have been reported before and ignored.

Wouldn’t it be nice if the CofE’s ethical concerns as embodied in its investments were ahead of the curve of public opinion?

Martin Reynolds
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Martin Reynolds

David da Silva Cornell and Paul Bagshaw together make the argument.

Against which, I am sorry to say there seems little defence.

Prior Aelred
Guest

@ Keith — one assumes that the Church Commissioners invested in The Sun because they thought it would make money. The Sun has been like the Fox News in the UK since Lord Northcliffe — basic theme seems to be naked women, soccer & less taxation (I’m sure the Gospel must be in there somewhere … no, I’m not).

Ian Black
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Ian Black

What on earth was the Church Commissioners doing investing in this company in the first place? It is not as though their journalistic stance and behaviour wasn’t well known for a very long time. How on earth can page 3 be held to be an appropriate investment for the church let alone anything else. That’s the real story and real question!