News Corp (NYSE: NWS) digital head Jon Miller and MySpace CEO Owen Van Natta have been in quiet mode but are appearing at D7, run by siblings AllThingsD and Dow Jones. First up: some "market research" in the form of survey results that showed why people leave MySpace31 percent for another social network, 30 percent because they're bored. Those kind of stats are part of the reason each man has his job. A few of the moments that stood out:
Is music too important for MySpace?: Miller: "Music has been a traditional source of strength for MySpace and it needs to continue to be." Asked later about MySpace Music and the complaints by Warner Music Group's Edgar Bronfman, Jr., and others that the music business isn't paying off, Van Natta replied: "Would the record labels like that to happen faster? ... Yes, and so would we, as partners in that venture." He said he talked to Bronfman a couple of weeks ago.
What happens when the guaranteed Google (NSDQ: GOOG) ad deal ends?: Van Natta: "We're working with Google to try to improve that deal and make it work better for all of us."
Changing the flashy MySpace look: Van Natta wants to leave what people like in place but add options for different users. "Personalization is ultimately the path you take to make this work for as many people who are using it today."
Changing from free to dual revenue: Miller gets the consumer desire for free content but clearly sees the need to add premium revenue streams: "We're coming out of an era where there was no perceived distinction to one where there has to be." First, he said, "We're about to see the rise of various forms of micropayments and things of that nature. [It's been] a long time coming."
More to come.
By Staci D. Kramer