John Malone at D7: No Easy Answers for Local

Liberty Media head John Malone, the man who conceptualized the “500 channel” universe and led the cable TV revolution in the 1980s, told an audience at The WSJ’s D7 conference in Carlsbad, California, that he sees the need for local news and local advertising, but doesn’t clearly know how to create a successful local product.

”What’s the role of localism?” Malone asked, according to a transcript of his interview.  “Will all advertising go national? Will all content go national? I really don’t have an answer.”

Malone added that “Barry Diller has been trying to build out Citysearch for a long time, and it’s a real struggle for him. He’s about break-even on it.”

Malone, who has been a major investor in IAC, and recently tried to wrestle control of the company away from Diller, emphasized that he didn’t want to provide any inside information about Citysearch. “I don’t want to give away any secrets,” he said.

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