When Chase Carey speaks, the media world listens. And rightfully so. As Rupert Murdoch‘s number two, News Corp.‘s COO’s opinions do have a certain amount of clout.
This morning, at the Media and Money Conference, hosted by Nielsen and Dow Jones, Carey spoke about a number of topics — from Comcast seeking majority ownership of NBC Universal to the future of network television to pay walls for online journalism.
Carey said he thought the NBCU deal “makes sense for Comcast,” adding that it is a “pretty smartly structured deal” for the company. He also seemed pretty excited about the fact that the deal would test the regulatory waters under the new administration, perhaps setting the stage for or heading off other deals in the future. “These are uncharted waters with major issues with two big companies,” he said.
Carey seemed positive that the major players involved would be left with “regulatory baggage” after the deal was completed, although he doubted any assets would have to be sold.
As for pay walls, which News Corp.-owned Wall Street Journal has excelled at and Murdoch has pushed to extend across all his brands, Carey emphasized consistency. He said he was interested in “creating a great experience around content itself,” adding that people will pay for value and a good experience. “Quality journalism has value,” he said.
Later, when a reporter quizzed him about Murdoch’s plans to take his sites off Google and the Journal‘s leaky wall, Carey said he wanted the pay wall to remain consistent — if only subscribers can access certain content on WSJ.com, then others shouldn’t get it for free. But, there is some content you can get for free on the site, Carey pointed out. He didn’t outline any plans for creating the consistency he championed.
More from the Media and Money Conference, after the jump