Millionaire Media Moguls Slightly Less Rich

Did you know that when the stock market goes down, media bosses get poorer like magic? It's true — and the fact that it's a totally obvious point doesn't make it any less fun!

The problem with lists of billionaires' paper losses, like the one Henry Blodget's Business Sheet has assembled, is that they're frustratingly free of context. Did a particular CEO do anything to make his company's shares worthless, or was he just buffeted willy-nilly by the crashing stock market? Is Rupert Murdoch $3.5 billion poorer because he's a bad manager, or just unlucky? Instead, we're left knowing that they own many millions of shares in their companies and those shares are, ohmigod, totally worth less now than they were last January! That's about as much fun as reading companies' annual proxy statements.

What this list needs is a dose of schadenfreude. Here's an edited version, including only those people we really are happer to see poorer:

Here's the whole list. Bravo if you can make it to the end — at which point you will learn that you never really cared about EchoStar CEO Charlie Ergen, the richest media mogul you've never heard of and for good reason. Also, you'll wonder why media CEOs aren't more photogenic.

(Photos via the Business Sheet; clockwise from upper left: Bewkes, Sulzberger, Zell, Dolan, Ailes)