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News Corp denies hacking pay-TV rival, wants BBC to retract 'baseless' allegations

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News Corp's President and COO, Chase Carey, has spoken out against allegations from the BBC that the company published a competitor's pay-TV encryption codes as "unfair and baseless."

Satellite Dish
Satellite Dish

This Monday, the BBC's Panorama documentary was dedicated to an investigation into the competitive (or, to put it more accurately, anti-competitive) practices of News Corp in the UK digital TV market. The core allegation in the report was that a News Corp subsidiary helped undermine budding competitor ITV Digital by publishing the encryption codes for its subscription-based service, allowing users to exploit it without having to pay. Today, News Corp's President and COO, Chase Carey, has spoken out against the BBC's findings, describing them as "unfair and baseless." He's also enthusiastically endorsing a letter sent to the BBC by NDS, the former News Corp subsidiary at the center of the issue, which demands that the British broadcaster withdraw the allegations immediately.

It's hardly a shock to find News Corp disputing what are grave charges of corporate wrongdoing, but we doubt the BBC will simply retract its report and make apologies for disturbing Mr. Carey's sleep. It's far more likely, as Labour MP Tom Watson proposes, that these new allegations will be added to the current Ofcom investigation into the phone hacking scandal that has been dogging News Corp in the UK since last summer.