Powerful shareholders of News Corporation are calling for the removal of the media empire's founder and chairman Rupert Murdoch ahead of the annual general meeting on 16 October. They want to appoint an independent chair to replace him. Investors, it seems, are sick of months of scandal and a UK parliamentary inquiry into a vile and criminal phone-hacking operation at one of the company's now closed newspapers.
The shareholders' bid may not succeed, but their revolt, more potent now than a similar effort last year, shows how low the media mogul's popularity has sunk inside his own empire, as well as with the general public.
Of course the reasons are slightly different. Shareholders working to remove Murdoch (who controls 40% of the shareholders' vote) have profits in mind: they are eager to replace the disgraced chairman with an independent manager who can return respectability and reliable quarterly dividends. It's not the people leading this charge, though; it's massive funds like Hermes and Australia's First Super.
But the fact that Murdoch's name has become so toxic to investors is a real testament to the people-powered movement that has pushed for his removal.
And the public's disgust with Murdoch is for bigger reasons than the shareholders' narrow interests. News Corp has come to epitomise the very worst in media: yes, by illegally mining information, but also more generally by peddling inaccuracies and partisan mythology as truth.
Shareholders should boot Murdoch out of the seat of power in News Corp, no doubt. But the task for the rest of us is bigger: we must work to bring transparency, accuracy and trust back to the media.
Sources: Guardian, Avaaz, ABC