Why Barry Diller Rules
Love him or hate him, Barry Diller has a lot to say about a lot of things. Feel free to debate what’s bigger: his wallet or his ego.
While it was reported that Diller’s recent decision to split IAC/InterActiveCorp into five different companies was a sign of failure, Diller’s no dummy. Google, the same company Diller’s Ask.com blatantly advertises that it competes against, is responsible for more than $3 billion of its revenue!
It wasn’t a suprise to hear Diller chime in on the subject of user-generated content. During Advertising Age’s recent The Idea Conference, Diller further explained his comments to Michael Eisner from his CNBC interview last month. “There’s not going to be endless curiousity about little films of your cat throwing up on your grandmother,” said Diller, stressing that UGC continues to lack mass-appeal. I agree with his assertion that the talent pool doesn’t automatically get bigger just because people have access to self-publishing tools.
I was also drawn to the Diller appearance because of the rumor and his response to an interest in purchasing AOL, which continues to gasp for air while Time Warner looks for someone who will take it off its hands. “AOL is this aging symbol of the past,” Diller said, and would be “great clay to play with.” Thanks, Mr. Diller. You took the words right out of my mouth.
I always look forward to sitting down with my extended family during Thanksgiving. Maybe some day I’ll get the chance to sit with Diller and Rupert Murdoch, two ageless men with young ideas and enough money to buy a lot of turkeys. They’re proof that old media can make it in the new world.