Politics 9 November 2009 Murdoch: I'll sue the BBC Media mogul threatens lawsuit against Beeb for "stealing" his papers' stories Sign up for our weekly email * Print HTML Rupert Murdoch may have indicated that News Corporation could miss its target of charging for all its news websites by next summer, but in his latest interview he steps up his war on the "content kleptomaniacs" of the internet. As well as raising the possibility that he could block Google from including his newspapers' stories in its search index, the media mogul signals that he has the online news provided by ABC and the BBC in his sights: [If] you look at them, most of their stuff is stolen from the newspapers now, and we'll be suing them for copyright. They'll have to spend a lot more money on a lot more reporters to cover the world when they can't steal from newspapers. The removal of stories from Google and other web "parasites" would lead to a dramatic fall in traffic but it's hard to imagine Murdoch losing much sleep over this. The advertising revenue that follows web users is too paltry to be worthy of his attention. His plan to charge for digital content is in many ways designed not to make online news profitable but to push people back to print. As his biographer Michael Wolff has written: "The more he can choke off the internet as a free news medium, the more publishers he can get to join him, the more people he can bring back to his papers. It is not a war he can win in the long term, but a little Murdoch rearguard action might get him to his own retirement. Then it's somebody else's problem." I'm convinced that James Murdoch, the heir apparent to the News Corp empire, will veto his father's more outlandish proposals regarding Google, but otherwise the company's strategy appears fixed. At 78 years old, Murdoch is gearing up for one of the biggest battles of his life. He will not go gentle into that good night. › Brown bashing, part 94 George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman. Subscribe from just £1 per issue More Related articles Let's talk about Daniel Hannan, Donald Trump and Adolf Hitler To the Commonwealth, "Global Britain" sounds like nostalgia for something else Is defeat in Stoke the beginning of the end for Paul Nuttall?