In rejecting Rupert Murdoch's offer for Dow Jones, the Bancroft family provides a textbook example of the case for—and against—dual class shares for media companies. With their shares carrying ten times the voting power of publicly traded shares, the family has the power to spurn a suitor it deems a poor match for the country's premiere financial newspaper.
That may be good for the public, if not for owners of the publicly traded stock, MarketWatch observes. And there's a limit to how much they'll take before mutiny ensues. Just ask people over at the New York Times Co., where shareholders have recently escalated efforts to loosen the Sulzberger family's grip on the company.