Marcus Brauchli has resigned as managing editor of the Wall Street Journal, as expected following last night’s reports . The company sent out the announcement following a meeting between members of the committee designated to “protect” the paper’s editorial independence following the acquisition of Dow Jones by News Corp, Brauchli and execs from DJ and News Corp (NYSE: NWS).
Brauchli’s new role? A consultant to News Corp providing “guidance to senior management in a wide range of areas, from advising The Wall Street Journal to exploring the possibility of a business news channel for STAR-TV in Asia.” The announcement doesn’t say why someone so unhappy in his current role would want to stay with the company but you can fill in the blanks.
The search for a successor officially begins now although it is hard to suspect it hasn’t been ongoing or that someone isn’t already in mind.
In a memo to staff (distributed with the News Corp press release and posted in full below the jump): Brauchli said: “I have come to believe the new owners should have a managing editor of their choosing. So, today, I am resigning … Since the acquisition last December, the new management scrupulously has avoided imposing any political or business viewpoints on our coverage and rigorously has enforced the code of conduct. I am confident that our journalistic integrity remains intact and that News Corp. is committed to a Journal that is vibrant, vital and preeminent in American journalism.”
WSJ: “While the committee has to approve hiring of a new managing editor, the agreement covering its creation says nothing about its role if the editor resigns. The committee was created in a negotiation between News Corp. and Dow Jones leading up to last year’s sale.” (Text of agreement)
Update: The special committee just issued a statement: “The Special Committee was informed earlier this week about Marcus Brauchli