Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Netflix Grabs a Yahoo to Help Run Its Web Video Business

Yep, there are still people left to poach at Yahoo: Michael Spiegelman, who spent most of his 6.5-year tenure in and around the company’s music unit and most recently ran product for its entertainment group, is heading to Netflix (NFLX). His new gig: Product lead for the video company’s Web streaming business.

Good move! That is a, very, very interesting place to be right now: Ask Apple (AAPL), Comcast (CMCSA), Hulu and everyone else paying attention to Web video who they spend time worrying about, and they’ll name Reed Hastings’s company.

Via an email interview, Spiegelman dutifully praises Yahoo (YHOO), then explains why he’s leaving Santa Monica for Los Gatos:

[Netflix has] built a real culture around innovation and empowering people to get things done, and they’ve got a highly sophisticated testing and analytics system that enables them to quickly measure the impact of any change. They’re clearly focused on making the digital media business successful and are highly invested in it. The opportunity to be part of a company that’s growing fast, doing things right and creating a unique culture along the way very interesting.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work