Murdoch's `Cosmic Armada': Pie In The Sky?
Call him the mogul who fell to earth. Just weeks ago, News Corp. executives were calling Chairman Rupert Murdoch's fleet of satellites a "cosmic armada." The military allusion declared Murdoch's intent: This was a campaign to control television across four continents. When Murdoch kick-started his invasion of the U.S. direct-broadcast satellite (DBS) market in late February with an announced $1 billion acquisition of 49% of EchoStar Communications Corp., he adopted the stance of an invincible conqueror surveying a new colony. Murdoch's top satellite executive, Preston Padden, joked that Sky, their DBS service, would leave U.S. cable companies suicidal and "calling for Dr. Kevorkian."
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