Arun Sudhaman 08 Jul 2011 // 9:01AM GMT
The UK media is, unsurprisingly, dominated by News Corp’s decision to shut down its Sunday tabloid News of the World, in response to the debilitating phone-hacking scandal. From our perspective, it is worth taking a look at the key public relations people who are involved in the situation: Simon Greenberg is News International’s director of corporate affairs, reporting directly to CEO Rebekah Brooks. He was appointed to the newly-created role in January of this year, after NI determined it needed an experienced practitioner to oversee its PR strategy as the phone-hacking crisis unfolded. Greenberg was previously chief of staff for England’s failed 2018 World Cup bid, and also spent five years as head of comms and public affairs at Chelsea FC, after a successful career as a sports journalist on Fleet Street. For the most part, Greenberg has served as the public face of News International in recent days, and has attracted considerable criticism for his attempts to defend the company and Brooks. Alastair Campbell referred to Greenberg’s media rounds as “car crash interviews”, while the Guardian pointed out that “little in his career to date will have prepared him for the merciless glare of the media spotlight as he trots from studio to studio to protect his bosses.” Matthew Anderson is group director of strategy and corporate affairs for News Corp across Europe and Asia and is widely seen as COO James Murdoch’s right-hand man. Anderson has become a serious player in the media world, responsible for shaping public perceptions of the younger Murdoch ahead of a potential succession. He was present at the New York conference in April, when James Murdoch announced that there was no reputation crisis at News Corp. The Californian is based in London but has accumulated significant experience in the US and Asia during his years agency-side, notably at Ogilvy PR, where he led Asia-Pacific and EMEA. Anderson is also one of the few PR agency people to have moved into a strategic in-house role that oversees marketing and brand-building.