Rupert Murdoch, one of the world’s greatest media magnates, was born on this day in 1931 in Melbourne, Australia. His father was the Australian journalist Sir Keith Murdoch, from whom Rupert inherited a large share in the media corporation News Limited (for the most part active only in southern Australia). Rupert Murdoch used this inheritance to expand his wealth many times over. He branched out to the whole of Australia, and then to the UK, where he bought The Sun newspaper in 1969. Murdoch changed it into a tabloid, after which its sales began booming. In 1981 Murdoch also bought The Times, a newspaper with a particularly long tradition.
During the 1980s, Murdoch founded and expanded the satellite television network Sky in the UK. Roughly at the same time, he bought the famous 20th Century Fox in the USA. In time, Fox grew to a whole media empire in the USA, covering TV programs (Fox News, etc.) and movie production (Titanic and Avatar, among others).
In time Murdoch also bought The Wall Street Journal, the National Geographic Channel, and the HarperCollins publishing company. Murdoch and his media, especially Fox in the USA, are often the targets of criticism. Today Murdoch is one of the wealthiest people in the world, his wealth being estimated at over 12 billion U.S. dollars.