Silicon Valley conquers Hollywood, part 2 — There’s no business like show business

theproducersA friend of mine who is a securities lawyer in New York worked on the 1985 sale of 20th Century Fox by Marvin Davis to Rupert Murdoch. He led a group of New York attorneys to Los Angeles where they spent weeks going over contracts for many Fox films. What they found was that with few exceptions there were no contracts. There were signed letters of intent (agreements to agree) for pictures budgeted at $20-$50 million but almost no actual contracts. Effectively business was being done, movies were being made, and huge sums of money were being transferred on a handshake. That’s how Hollywood tends to do business and it doesn’t go down very well […]

No white smoke yet in Cupertino

At the Vatican, white smoke coming from a chimney at the Sistine Chapel indicates that a new Pope has been selected by the College of Cardinals. Well despite yesterday’s news of Steve Jobs’s departure again from Apple for medical reasons there is as yet no sign of white smoke in Cupertino where Jobs remains firmly in charge.

Readers expect me to comment on this news and I will, but frankly I’m still trying to figure it out so here are a number of random thoughts.

I sent an e-mail to Steve Jobs early last week and he didn’t respond. That’s not in itself such a big deal because Steve periodically ignores me. But other folks at Apple were […]

By |January 18th, 2011|2011|93 Comments

News Corp to Offer Plaid Stamps!

A&PRupert Murdoch said recently that he’s planning to stop Google News from indexing his publications including the Times of London and the Wall Street Journal. Murdoch’s idea is that Google News and the like make it too easy for Internet users to sample news for free rather than paying for it as God and Rupert intended. Mark Cuban, who is very clever but with whom I rarely agree, thinks this is smart on Murdoch’s part, because Twitter is changing the way people find news, effectively disintermediating Google, but not the News Corp. publications, themselves.

It’s funny how Murdoch’s statement made Cuban think of Twitter while it made me […]

By |November 9th, 2009|2009|136 Comments