Barry Diller has all the respect in the world for fellow mogul Rupert Murdoch–except when it comes to Facebook:
Ad Age: Rupert Murdoch…called MySpace a place for self-expression and called Facebook “a web utility, similar to a phone book.” Do you agree?
Mr. Diller: Mr. Murdoch is right on many things, but I don’t think he’s right on this. I think Facebook is far more than that. What it becomes is something I can’t predict, but it’s certainly far more than that right now. … You don’t get much pleasure from going to the phone book. And you get an awful lot of staying around on Facebook, because of the things you’re looking at and the information you’re changing, and all of that is compelling.
Of course, that doesn’t mean Barry thinks Facebook is worth $15B:
Mr. Diller: Those are not valuations based on anything fundamental; those are valuations based upon rather enormous hopes and dreams. Not that they won’t necessarily come true, but at this point, that’s what they are in terms of revenue and profits getting to the level that would sustain a very high asset value. … The physics would demand that this becomes more rational at some point, I think maybe sooner rather than later. But again, that’s a prediction based on nothing but hot air, to mix many different metaphors.