News Corp scandal prompts Shakespearean online quips

LONDON Sat Jul 16, 2011 11:15am EDT

LONDON (Reuters) - Dramatic events at Rupert Murdoch's News Corp are inspiring satirical online comment in Shakespearean language, with lines such as "countrymen, lend me your voicemail" flooding microblogging site Twitter.

Many jibes, such as "Rebekah, Rebekah, wherefore art thou Rebekah," poke fun at former Murdoch confidante and head of his British newspaper arm Rebekah Brooks, who resigned over the phone hacking scandal on Friday.

Some lines, such as "The nature of bad news infects the teller," are taken directly from one of Shakespeare's plays, but other posters have been more creative.

"If we Murdochs have offended, a full page ad and all is mended," read one Twitter post, referring to Murdoch's full-page apologies over phone hacking posted in British newspapers on Saturday.

In a twist on the title of Shakespeare's "The Taming of the Shrew," another poster wrote "taming of the screws," referring to the News of the World's "News of the Screws" nickname.

One message simply read: "A plague on all on your papers."

(Reporting by Mohammed Abbas; Editing by David Cowell)