Rupert Murdoch smeared by word puzzle

by Toby Manhire / 17 December, 2013
"Satanic backmasking" slurs Murdoch - plus other media moguls insulted in their own papers.
A word puzzle in the News Limited title the Sunday Telegraph invited readers to identify “animals of Indonesia” in the jumbled of letters.

CIVET was there. So was DOLPHIN.

There is no such documented animal as a LIVESIHCODRUM, but read in reverse order those letters, which appear in the puzzle designed by “Harry the Dog”, and you might see why it would upset the big boss at News Limited. Rupert something.

It appears to be a novel example of “Satanic backmasking”, reckons Tim Elliott in the rival Sydney Morning Herald.

The most famous example being “Led Zeppelin's Stairway to Heaven, some of the lyrics of which, which when played backwards, sound like, ‘Oh here's to my sweet Satan … He will give those with him 666. There was a little tool shed where he made us suffer, sad Satan.’”

A few years ago, another scribe found to his cost that mass circulation newspapers might not be the place to sneak in unspoken sentiments.

Stephen Pollard had been about to begin a new job as editorial writer at the Times newspaper of London (another Murdoch organ) when something unusual was discovered in the final editorial he wrote for the Daily Express, the paper recently acquired by controversial media mogul and pornography publisher Richard Desmond.

There was an acrostic.

Spell out the first letter of each sentence in an otherwise mundane leader on the farming industry, and you would read, “F*** YOU DESMOND” (needless to say, he did not use the asterisks).

It was a mistake. Pollard, who had previously said Desmond and his lieutenants treat readers “like imbeciles who want to live on a diet of pap”, found that the Times job was suddenly no longer on offer.

See also:

Murdoch papers come out swinging on press regulation

Ten of the best newspaper corrections

Follow the Listener on Twitter or Facebook.
MostReadArticlesCollectionWidget - Most Read - Used in articles
AdvertModule - Advert - M-Rec / Halfpage


Govt defends $53m price tag for Dubai Expo pavilion
71547 2017-04-25 00:00:00Z Currently

Govt defends $53m price tag for Dubai Expo pavilio…

by RNZ

The government is defending its decision to spend $53 million on a world expo in Dubai to promote New Zealand businesses.

Read more
A Way with Words: Elizabeth Knox
71173 2017-04-25 00:00:00Z Books

A Way with Words: Elizabeth Knox

by Elizabeth Knox

I write in pencil. I’m fetishistic about them: I use only Staedtler Noris Club Triplus Jumbo.

Read more
Junkyard dog: Transforming scrap metal into practical street art
70370 2017-04-25 00:00:00Z Life in NZ

Junkyard dog: Transforming scrap metal into practi…

by Stacey Anyan

Te Aroha scrap metal sculptor Adrian Worsley brings art to the street.

Read more
Crossword 1024 answers and explanations
The best signs from the Auckland March for Science
PM confirms 'Five Eyes' conference in Queenstown
71527 2017-04-24 09:58:30Z Politics

PM confirms 'Five Eyes' conference in Queenstown

by RNZ

Prime Minister Bill English has confirmed a meeting of the 'Five Eyes' intelligence group is being held in New Zealand this week.

Read more
Tight security amid Gallipoli terror warnings
71517 2017-04-24 06:57:26Z World

Tight security amid Gallipoli terror warnings

by Chris Bramwell

Kiwis attending Anzac commemorations at Gallipoli this year will face airport-level security restrictions after warnings of terror attacks.

Read more
How empathy can make the world a worse place
71431 2017-04-24 00:00:00Z Social issues

How empathy can make the world a worse place

by Catherine Woulfe

Many of us think that high empathy makes you a good person, but giving in to this “gut wrench” can make the world worse, says a Yale psychologist.

Read more