Murdoch: the Internet has been the most fundamental change during my lifetime and for hundreds of years. Someone the other day said, “It’s the biggest thing since Gutenberg,” and then someone else said, “No, it’s the biggest thing since the invention of writing.” With the technology that goes with it, the fact is that everybody now is empowered: Anyone can buy what they want, shop where they want, talk to anybody in the world that they want (and) state their own opinions. There’s no mystery to a blog: Put up your thoughts (and) find friends. And the younger people are, the more time they’re spending on it — it’s extraordinary.
THR: You said the Internet is more revolutionary than writing. What do you see when you look ahead 10 years? How do think the next generation will affect your company?
Murdoch: There are three very large Internet companies: America Online, which delivers data, which is really what’s keeping them very strong; everyone in the world goes to Yahoo! to do their e-mail, and search with Google. I think online, it’s the search for groupings, identifying search for groupings and providing sites for that — to meet, talk, discuss. These are very interesting; there are huge numbers of people. (We’re going to be) learning a lot about them and then selling advertising to them. Not too obtrusively, but when you target, there’s no waste: 50,000 people over here or 5 million people over there.
THR: It’s an advertiser play, not a subscriber play?
Murdoch: Absolutely. I don’t see it as a subscriber play, except in very special circumstances. And people will find ways of generating transactions on sites and getting a share of the business.
Read the full interview here.