Time Warner CEO Uses Unfortunate Analogy To Describe State Of Competition

from the and-his-name-is-jack-crabb dept

Speaking at a conference, Time Warner CEO Richard Parsons described the current media landscape by saying, "The Googles of the world, they are the Custer of the modern world. We are the Sioux nation," a reference to the famous Battle of the Little Bighorn. There are a couple of things very wrong with this statement. The most obvious is that if you're trying to make the argument that you can thrive in the new environment, the Sioux nation doesn't exactly make for the most flattering comparison, considering how things ultimately played out. The other, more serious, problem is that it shows that Parson's strategic thinking is totally wrong. Treating Google as an adversary is the wrong way to think of things. After all, the two companies are in different, complementary lines of business. Time Warner, as a creator of content, should be interested in how Google's search and advertising capabilities can improve its business, rather than trying to "beat" Google, whatever that would mean. Unfortunately, Parsons' thinking seems to be endemic among media executives these days, which goes a long way in explaining the industry's struggles.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    sam, May 10th, 2007 @ 1:48pm

    umm joe....

    just what business do you think time warner is in.. a good portion of the 'time warner' function is the print/magazine side... just what do you think drives this portion if not advertising... and who do you think is one of the largest guys on the block regarding advertising.. umm.. google!

    joe.. come on'.. reapply your logic here!!

     

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  2.  
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    Ajax 4Hire, May 10th, 2007 @ 2:05pm

    No, Time-Warner is on both sides of the fence...

    Time-Warner is a Movie Studio;
    Time-Warner is a Cable Company.
    Oh, yeah, and Time-Warner/AOL is an Internet provider.

    Great synergy if you can organize it effectively.

    I agree, Time-Warner should be working with Google/youTube as both a content distributor and as a content creator.

    Working with Google, Time-Warner could use its content distribution network (cable system) to connect people to Google. Google can in turn link billions (with a B) customers to Timer-Warner content.

    This is where Timer-Warner/AOL has a significant advantage over the other Cable/network operators.

     

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  3.  
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    kuronoir, May 10th, 2007 @ 3:51pm

    thank God

    Thank God you didn't say it was bad because he compared himself to native Americans. Does this mean political correctness is fading (please say yes, please say yes).

     

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  4.  
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    dorpass, May 10th, 2007 @ 3:58pm

    Re:

    sam, may be you should START applying logic. That was just moronic. Can't even comment. I wish dorpus posted first, not you.

     

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  5.  
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    andy, May 10th, 2007 @ 4:25pm

    Re:

    "a good portion of the 'time warner' function is the print/magazine side..."

    cite your sources, sam... or at least name ONE print/magazine that time warner produces.

     

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  6.  
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    sam, May 10th, 2007 @ 4:29pm

    Re:

    Like maybe TIME, perhaps?

     

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  7.  
    identicon
    sam, May 10th, 2007 @ 4:30pm

    Re:

    Like maybe TIME, perhaps?

     

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  8.  
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    charlie potatoes, May 10th, 2007 @ 4:52pm

    Dorpusity

    oh my god. dorpus has done it. he has his five minutes of fame.. to 'pull a dorpus'..as in: say something so utterly ridiculous that it defies logic to even attempt to respond.

     

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  9.  
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    Linqink, May 10th, 2007 @ 5:14pm

    Re: Re:

    Maybe you should Google before you comment?

    Here's a list:
    http://www.pathfinder.com/pathfinder/index.html

    Time, People, InStyle, Business 2.0, Sunset and about a dozen others.

     

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  10.  
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    bailey, May 10th, 2007 @ 5:21pm

    Not only are they competitors they are also bed fellows. Google owns a portion of AOL. Which is why AOL, is now a LLC rather then a totally owned subsidiary of Time Warner

     

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  11.  
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    dorpass, May 10th, 2007 @ 5:24pm

    Re: Dorpusity

    oh my god. dorpus has done it. he has his five minutes of fame.. to 'pull a dorpus'..as in: say something so utterly ridiculous that it defies logic to even attempt to respond.

    Except this time it was sam, the heir apparent.

     

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  12.  
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    sam, May 10th, 2007 @ 5:46pm

    ok kiddies (and you know who you are!)...

    let's talk about basic research 101... if you would take a sec, and use google, or any other search engine. you could in a few seconds find the corp link for time warner, which would list the overall corp breakdown. here you would see that magazines comprise a good portion of the revenues.

    here's a link for you to observe!
    >>http://www.timewarner.com/corp/businesses/detail/time_inc/index.html

     

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  13.  
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    GoblinJuice, May 10th, 2007 @ 6:13pm

    Hey, Parsons, pass the pipe this way! ;-)

     

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  14.  
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    not a jerk like kuronoir, May 10th, 2007 @ 7:09pm

    Re: thank God

    "Thank God"?
    As in s/God/Imaginary Friend with superpowers/g ?
    Ah, see how being politically incorrect hurts others?

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    not a jerk like kuronoir, May 10th, 2007 @ 7:09pm

    Re: thank God

    "Thank God"?
    As in s/God/Imaginary Friend with superpowers/g ?
    Ah, see how being politically incorrect hurts others?

     

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  16.  
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    RandomThoughts, May 10th, 2007 @ 8:03pm

    Google could become a direct competitor with Time Warner. Why do you think they got into the whole net neutrality issue (although they were late to the game.)

     

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  17.  
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    dourpus, May 10th, 2007 @ 9:28pm

    Re: Re: Dorpusity

    Except this time it was sam, the heir apparent.

    No, Dorpus will show up and keep showing up. For there to be an heir, there would have to be a lack of Dorpus. Techdirt is not Dorpus-less.

     

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  18.  
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    Dosquatch, May 11th, 2007 @ 5:10am

    Re: Dorpusity

    Dorpus hasn't shown up yet... please, allow me:

    In 1398, 10 miles outside of Montgomery and long before Columbus "found" the new world, the Native Americans had a magazine about Japanese schoolgirls in lederhosen called "Crotch Rot". Of course, it was printed on Cypress bark in goat's blood, but it still proves that Parsons' comment is on target. Or are you a mysoginist?

     

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  19.  
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    dorpass, May 11th, 2007 @ 9:12am

    confused about markets?

    Sam, dear, you put your pants on your head often? It seems you can get confused with obvious things rather easily. Time Warner's main market ins CONTENT CREATION. Google might have its YouTube, but that does not compare to the variety of content and control over it that Time Warner has. Next thing you are going to claim that Leo Burnett competes with Time Warner as well.

     

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  20.  
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    sam..., May 11th, 2007 @ 11:32am

    please dorpus....

    learn to read.. and then take some time, and try to comprehend.. i know the words might be a little too complex for you. but we have faith!!

    i stated, that a good portion of 'time warner' is based upon magazine publications, which derive a good chunk of their revenues from advertising, which competes against google....

    the thesis is that 'time warner' does consider google to be a competitor, which is exactly the way they should be considered...

    you might find yourself doing business with your competition for pure business reasons, but that doesn't stop the competition from being your competitor...

    hope you can comprehend this.. if you can't maybe someone else can help you out...!!

    peace

     

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  21.  
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    Mark, May 11th, 2007 @ 12:37pm

    Google pays AOL roughly $400mm / year

    AOL earns roughtly $400mm/year is revenue directly from Google. It is a large chunk if their advertising business. Odd comment indeed!

    M

     

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  22.  
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    Nick, May 12th, 2007 @ 1:31am

    Can some one please explain to me how these people become CEOs. I'll bargain to say 50% of techdirt is articles about millionaries complaining or sueing about not having enough money. So does any one have pride in their product/service any more?

     

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  23.  
    identicon
    Charles Griswold, May 13th, 2007 @ 5:33pm

    Re:

    Can some one please explain to me how these people become CEOs. I'll bargain to say 50% of techdirt is articles about millionaries complaining or sueing about not having enough money. So does any one have pride in their product/service any more?

    I laugh. :-D

    Seriously, though, yes; they're just not the ones you usually notice. I would wager that your average volunteer open source programmer takes great pride in his work.

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    Chris, May 16th, 2007 @ 1:28am

    Re: by sam

    Just have to point out that if you're going to slam someone for not being able to read, you might want to spell their name right. So far Dorpus has yet to post anything in this thread. Dourpus and Dorpass however have. So in that regard, sam, you're the one who should "learn to read."

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    Marion Allen, May 26th, 2007 @ 3:11am

    YOU GUYS SUCK!!!!!!!
    I have had nothing but break downs in your communication services since it started three months ago WHAT'S UP!!!I pay over 100 dollars a month for the service that is never running I never get my e-mails And people say we can never get through on your 207-510-1803 line!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1 Come on I need help here!!!

     

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  26.  
    identicon
    Hilton Harrell Jr, May 27th, 2007 @ 5:44am

    Comments made by Bill Maher

    It is time to fire Bill Maher for His bigotry against Christians. His loose lips and hateful speech has created an atmosphere of disrespect and antagonism against people of faith. Why does he only attack Christians and not muslims. Probably its because he figures that Christians would not threaten his life or create a global riot of animosity that threatens national and corporate security? I happened to catch His remarks on HBO just on the day before Jerry Fallwell's funeral. I am an alumni of Liberty University and was completely disgusted in Bill Maher's repulsive remarks. It is obvious that Bill Maher has a weak mind and lacks talent in every way. You see, ridicule has been used as a tool to demean and belittle people so that the other person can psychologically feel better about himself. He had clearly regressed back to an elementary school frame of mind and feels the need to inspire hatred in order to give his misery company. Social engineers use the art of reductionism in order to take out the meaning and substance of communication. Even a scoffers attempt to make the pursuit for truth into a distraction of entertainment merely feeds their own self-deception, their own world-view of meaninglessness, and their personal sense of worthlessness. If Bill Maher is not fired it will demonstrate that bigotry is a TIME-WARNER core value and chief core competency, and worthy of perpetual negative press and great financial loss to its' investors. Unless something is done, I have no choice but see that these consequences are inflicted throughout your company.

     

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