Kara Swisher

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In Case You Missed It: The CNBC Interview With Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz (Yes, She Disses Facebook, and No Trinket-Calling!)

Earlier this week, Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz was all over the place talking up the company on the occasion of its 15th birthday.

Here’s a video of a longish interview she did with CBNC, embedded below, where she cracks wise a lot, but says little.

My favorite part: When the interviewer oddly asks if Yahoo (YHOO) is a trinket and Bartz pipes up that it is a bracelet!

Thankfully, we have the critical jewelry issue around Yahoo settled.

Bartz also gets a good one off about Facebook’s lack of revenue compared with Yahoo, after being asked why Yahoo was not as hot as the social networking phenom.

“Remind me, what’s their revenue?” she asked.

Bartz’s week also included a lunch with a group of reporters at its Sunnyvale, Calif., HQ–pretty much Lady BoomTown and a dozen dudes–Tuesday, at which she talked about a range of things, offered Sprinkles cupcakes and broke no substantive news.

She did give good quote though.

Bartz, for example, said she didn’t “wish antitrust on anybody,” when asked about Google (GOOG) and its issues with regulators in Europe.

She also noted, talking about the search giant’s recent conviction in Italy and its potential impact: “The [European Union] concerns me.”

But when talking about Google’s threat to leave China over censorship issues, Bartz was less kind. “It looked to me like it was more of a statement than an action,” she said. “If they wanted to pull out, they should have pulled out.”

Perhaps the most controversial remark was when she seemed to compare herself with Apple (AAPL) CEO Steve Jobs, pointing out that his innovative turnaround of the iconic Silicon Valley computer company took a lot of time after he returned in 1996.

“He knew the DNA better than anyone and it took him four years,” she declared, noting her tenure was just over a year.

Perhaps her most important quote was related to losing search market share and seeing Facebook’s user growth close in on Yahoo.

Bartz said the real point at Yahoo was more “the fight to get ad dollars around relevant users.”

As in, from a jewelry point of view: Finding a diamond in the rough.

Here’s the video of the CNBC interview with Bartz:



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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald