galleryTop 10 News Corp. Scandals02.25.11galleryTop 10 News Corp. ScandalsFox News chief Roger Ailes is in hot water after reports that he told an employee to lie to the Feds. From royal phone hacking to the Bush-Gore fiasco, see alleged blunders from Murdoch's empire.02.25.11 7:23 PM ETA Royal Phone-Hacking ScandalIn 2008, Formula One racing president Max Mosley successfully sued News Corp.'s British tabloid, News of the World, for secretly recording him performing sadomasochistic sex acts with five prostitutes. The News of the World made a great show of its outrage over its reporter's ethical breach, insisting the spying was a one-off situation. But since then, the scandal has only grown to the point where Prime Minister David Cameron called for a full official inquiry. On Thursday, the Murdochs announced that Sunday’s edition of the paper will be the last in its 168-year history. The finale comes after a stream of appalling revelations—first a leak, then a gusher of news about tapping the phones of celebrities and royals, hacking the phones of murder and terror victims and their families, and paying off police for tips, among others. AP Photo (2)Judith Regan: Ailes Asked Me to Lie!When HarperCollins publisher Judith Regan was fired in 2006, she alleged that a senior executive at News Corp., HarperCollins' parent company, had asked her to lie to federal investigators vetting Bernard Kerik for the job of Homeland Security secretary. The executive wanted Regan to keep secret her past affair with Kerik, who would later be convicted for lying to White House officials. Now court documents have revealed that the mystery executive was none other than Fox News chairman Roger Ailes—and Regan claims to have a recorded phone call in which she and Ailes discussed her relationship with Kerik. News Corp. settled Regan's wrongful termination suit with a $10.75 million payout. AP Photo (2)Bill O’Reilly Sued for HarrassmentFox News crown prince Bill O’Reilly has not escaped the scandalous waters. The O’Reilly Factor host hit the gossip pages in 2004 when a former employee, Andrea Mackris, accused O’Reilly of telling her about sexual fantasies, masturbation, and vibrators while pleasuring himself. O’Reilly said the suit was a “brutal ordeal” and pleaded with his viewers to “not believe everything you hear and read.” O’Reilly sued Mackris for extortion, but in the end the talk-show host agreed to drop the suit and give Mackris an undisclosed sum of money—most likely in the millions. Fox NewsFox News’ Spin Memos LeakFor a “fair and balanced” network, a lot of spin happens at Fox News. In 2010 the network couldn't seem to stop its internal emails from getting out. After a pollster told the network that voters felt more negatively about President Obama's health-care reform effort when the word “government” was included, Fox News' vice president sent a companywide memo instructing reporters to refer to a hypothetical public-insurance option as “government-run health insurance.” The missive created a minor media firestorm. Less than a week later another one followed, this time ordering Fox journalists to cast doubt on climate science any time they mentioned global warming. The revelations confirmed long-held suspicions that Fox News operated on conservative talking points, as did a memoir by former Bush press secretary Scott McClellan, which revealed that he had provided Fox pundits with exclusive talking points so that they could disseminate the administration's message. If I Did It ControversyIt’s hard to believe now, but there was a time when there was some shadow of a doubt that O.J. Simpson was innocent in the death of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman. That all changed when in 2006, Simpson (almost) released an (almost) confessional book entitled If I Did It. News Corp. publisher Judith Regan showed no shame in saying she considered the book “his confession,” despite the fact that Simpson had been acquitted of the murders more than 10 years earlier. Regan and News Corp. were pressured to drop the project. But perhaps most disturbing of all were the leaked chapters, one of which was called “The Night in Question” and was obtained by Newsweek. The chapter not only gives previously unknown details of the gruesome murder—all “hypothetical,” of course—but also describes how Simpson felt his ex-wife drove him to murder her. The book was scrapped and all 400,000 printed copies were locked up in a News Corp. vault. The whole incident was so embarrassing it caused the unthinkable: Rupert Murdoch apologized for an “ill-conceived” project. Getty ImagesPage Six Payola ScandalThe New York Post’s Page Six is no stranger to scandal—the country’s best-known gossip page deals with some of the most taboo topics around. But Richard Johnson, Page Six’s longtime king, found himself in hot water after a former employee accused Johnson of accepting cash from a restaurateur, Nello Balan, in exchange for regular mentions in the column. Page Six eventually admitted to accepting $1,000 in a 1997 Christmas gift from Balan to Johnson, and Post editor in chief Col Allan called that “unethical.” Despite an FBI investigation, Johnson survived pretty much intact, retiring in 2010. Getty ImagesRoger Ailes Calls NPR 'Nazis'Perhaps as a precursor to the Judith Regan controversy, the Fox News exec went unedited in an interview with The Daily Beast’s Howard Kurtz in October, unleashing some choice words about his media brethren. Ailes blasted National Public Radio as “Nazis” for firing Fox News contributor Juan Williams for comments about Muslim Americans. The sensational quotes were picked up everywhere—even getting a mention by Jon Stewart, whom Ailes called “crazy” in the same interview—and Ailes was forced to apologize to the Anti-Defamation League. Ailes said he regretted using the phrase "Nazi" to describe NPR, but he did not shy away from his criticism of public radio, saying he should have used the phrase “nasty, inflexible bigot” instead. New York Post Predicts Wrong Kerry Running MateThe speculation in 2004 about which Democratic rival Sen. John Kerry would pick to be his running mate had reached fever pitch, and Murdoch's dishy New York Post finally couldn't wait any longer. On July 6, the paper reported with a screaming front-page headline that Kerry had chosen then-representative Dick Gephardt. That very day, the Kerry campaign announced that they had picked Sen. John Edwards. The paper made fun of itself the following day, reporting Kerry's choice with a “NOT EXCLUSIVE” banner. “Rest assured that generous helpings of crow were eaten here yesterday—and the leftovers will surely last a few more days,” the paper said in its official apology. “We do hope you'll forgive the error—it certainly was one for the record books.” AP PhotoFox News’ Tea Party Promos BackfireFox News promoted the Tea Party movement almost from the moment it began, and more than once the network's enthusiasm resulted in embarrassment. After commentator Sean Hannity covered a Michele Bachmann–led rally against health-care reform in November 2010, The Daily Show exposed that Hannity's program had used footage of an earlier, much larger rally to exaggerate the size of the crowd. And at that earlier rally, led by Fox pundit Glenn Beck, an FNC producer had been caught on tape leading the protesters in cheers so that they would appear excited on camera. An attempt to mock its competitors' coverage of the Tea Party also backfired: Fox took out full-page newspaper ads chastising MSNBC, CNN, and others for ignoring the movement, but the photo in the ad was taken from a CNN live broadcast of a Tea Party rally.