Who is Emma Tucker and will she be a good editor of the Wall Street Journal?
Big picture first: she's a 56 year old Brit who has never worked in the United States – though she went to high school in New Mexico – and has edited the London Sunday Times for a tad under three years.
She is, of course, a highly experienced journalist who has worked for Murdoch papers since 2007. In Murdochland, support from the owner tends to be more important than external perceptions, and she represents a return to a pattern of editors arriving from other NewsCorp papers.
Importantly, she has considerable financial markets, political and foreign affairs experience from 17 years at the Financial Times, including decent stints in Brussels and Berlin. At the London Times and The Sunday Times from 2007 she was initially features focused, but then had the deputy role from 2013. From the outside it is always harder to know exactly what that means, and it's obviously a management job, but clearly she’s had much less to do with global business and finance over the last decade.
Her predecessor Matt Murray had a challenging time in his four years as editor, and one suspects will not be that long doing special projects at NewsCorp. His clashes with the publisher have been excellently reported on by Edmund Lee of the NYT, see below. Murray was not a high profile editor and it may be that she continues that tradition. She's certainly been involved in The Sunday Times’ digital transformation and that's an excellent product now. The Journal has had more challenges on digital, as signalled in the departure of Louise Story a couple of years ago.
So good luck to her, and I'm sure I am being slightly harsh (as often) in terms of her understanding of the United States, but she is something of an unknown quantity here. Those of us in the PR business will watch with interest. (She does have several times more Twitter followers than her predecessor, I note.)
Andrew Marshall is the managing director of Cognito's New York office