The phone hacking scandal in Britain has thus far been contained to that country. In a nutshell, journalists from publications and media outlets controlled by Rupert Murdoch’s Newscorp hacked into the voicemail accounts of individuals who were of interest in news stories. The scandal eventually broke, after long having been stymied by lawyers and politicking. But once it did, it did so with vehemence, and the scandal is probably the biggest the UK has seen in decades.
Enter Michael Moore: he’s convinced that Fox News probably has done something similar in the United States, and that claim has actually been backed up by claims made by several family members of 9/11 victims. Moore is going on a combination of basic evidence and gut instinct, but his reasoning, in my opinion, is fundamentally sound: why would the practice be confined to the UK alone? It’s highly unlikely that a decision was reached in the upper reaches of the Murdoch empire that what was acceptable in one domain of the media conglomerate was acceptable in Britain but not in the US?
The phone hacking scandal has been playing out for a while in Britain now, and it’s going to take some time for this to play out in the US. And while Moore is going on little more than anecdotal evidence and a hunch, that’s how some of the most important news stories have ever been broken. We may be on the cusp of entering a process that may fall the giant that is Fox News.