Est. May 2008

18 July, 2011

Rupert Murdoch, Bible Publisher?

Did you know? Rupert Murdoch, the guy in charge of News Corporation who recently folded News of the World (‘the most widely read English tabloid in the world’) because of a phone-text-hacking scandal, also owns Zondervan, the biggest Bible publishing house in the world?

Some folks think this is important.


Like Will Braun, who published a screed about it at Geez Magazine’s Holy Moly Blog. HuffPo’s Religion department thought it was important enough to repeat it verbatim. Even USA Today thought it newsworthy.

Mr. Braun seems worked up that a mega-mogul like Murdoch, whose NotW was a bit of a scandal-rag, would even think of profiting by publishing God’s word:
For those us of who care about the Christian scriptures, what are we to make of this mix of billionaire media tycoonery, allegations of phone hacking and bribery, and the Holy Word of God? What are we to make of the fact that every time we buy a Zondervan product we contribute to Murdoch's mogul-dom, which includes a personal fortune that Forbes pegged at $6.3 billion last year.
Yeah, how DARE companies profit by printing and distributing Bibles.

The horror, the horror.

Get the impression I think this is much ado about nothing?

Sure, there are people who find this kind of thing upsetting. Like Geez Magazine’s editor Aiden Enns, who ‘once cut the Zondervan label out of the spine of his Bible in protest’ (which completely changes the fact that the Bible was still published by Zondervan) and who ‘suggests a self-imposed tax or tithe on Zondervan purchases’:
If you buy a $20 Claiborne book, give an additional $2 to a good cause (maybe the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility). Call it the “ethical compromise tax,” or the “sin tax”
And there will be some people who, edified by this information, will no longer deal with Zondervan at all. IMHO, boycotting Zondervan because it’s owned by Murdoch is like boycotting gas stations once a year because gas prices are too high – useless. Murdoch won’t feel it, but Zondervan will; considering they sold themselves to Murdoch in the first place might indicate a cash flow problem.

But Mr. Braun does raise an interesting question: Does God need News Corp.? I hardly think God needs anything that’s on this planet to satisfy Himself, but what God ‘needs’ isn’t the point. The point is, God has shown many times that He uses evil for good. Whether Murdoch saw buying Zondervan as an opportunity to make more money or not, the fact that he owns a publishing house which publishes Bibles means he’s actually doing God’s work, even if he doesn’t realize it.

3 comments:

Teresa said...

Interesting information. Thanks for posting about this. I really don't see this as a big deal either.

Anonymous said...

I will be leaving all Zondervan products on the shelf now that I know the money goes to support this rather evil empire. I did not realise that Zondervan had sold out in this way. The problem for me is "Where does your money go to? Is it ultimately for God's glory or not?". Too much of what Murdoch does is NOT to God's glory.

Always On Watch said...

I had no idea that Murdoch owns Zondervan!

I won't boycott Zondervan. On the contrary, in my view, the publication of Bibles trumps the man Murdoch.