James Murdoch Out as BSkyB Chairman

James Murdoch Out as BSkyB Chairman

James Murdoch Out as BSkyB Chairman

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April 3 2012 3:57 PM

James Murdoch Resigns as BSkyB Chairman

The Murdoch media empire continues to lose blood and leadership from self-inflicted wounds. James Murdoch, whose position at BSkyB has been threatened since last year's phone hacking scandal broke, has decided to step down as chairman of the British pay-TV group. He will remain on the company’s board.

In 2011, News Corp's tabloid News of the World admitted to hacking the cellphones of numerous celebrities, crime victims, even people killed during the attacks on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11 in order to generate news stories. Though acknowledging that his role could be a “lightning rod” in a letter to the board, Murdoch, the 39-year-old son of Rupert Murdoch and supposed heir to his media empire, has repeatedly maintained his innocence in the scandal.

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In removing the younger Murdoch, BSkyB hopes to distance itself from its 39-percent owner News Corp. He was re-elected to the broadcaster’s board last November.

Video produced by Jim Festante

Ben Johnson is the producer of Marketplace Tech from American Public Media.