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The Curse of the Mogul: What's Wrong with the World's Leading Media Companies

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  197 ratings  ·  15 reviews
If Rupert Murdoch and Sumner Redstone are so smart, why are their stocks long-term losers?
We live in the age of big Media, with the celebrity moguls telling us that "content is king." But for all the excitement, glamour, drama, and publicity they produce, why can't these moguls and their companies manage to deliver better returns than you'd get from closing your eyes and
ebook, 320 pages
Published October 15th 2009 by Portfolio (first published 2009)
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George Xanthopoulos
Sep 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
1. Dare to dream, 2. Keep it local, keep it focused, 3. Efficiency is cool, 4. Don't be such a big shot, 5. Watch your back, 6. There is much to be said for dying with dignity.

Dow Jones-CBS Marketwatch, Microsoft-Yahoo!, Eisner (1984-1989), Murdoch, Bloomberg, EA (2001-2005), Nintendo (cartridges), Google, many more ..
Dao Le
May 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
Useful summary of all the important concepts one might learn in business school applying to the media industry : competitive advantages - reinforce and cooperate if you have one, focus on operating efficiency if you don’t; content (or talent) is not king; local and specialized trumps unprofitable global growth; and (most) M&As are stupid. ...more
Evan DeSimone
Great for a broad view of the media ecosystem but less effective at predicting the future. This is the cost of reading a work like this ten years after publication, there are some great data points here that I had forgotten but it's much stronger looking backward than at trying to extrapolate industry trends.
Jay Li
Feb 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A must read for media analysts. Great insight on competitive advantage and capital allocation decisions of media companies. Also good background information to understand the current streaming war.
Henry Innis
Apr 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Tough read, but highly insightful.
May 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

"The Curse of the Mogul" is a fascinating research work on the media industry. Mr. Knee and Mr. Greenwald were able to dissect the media industry and discuss important topics such as the difference between perceived competitive advantages vs. real competitive advantages, areas in which you can find better investments in the media landscape as well as the internet impact on eroding once dominant organizations advantages.

The authors fascinating facts finding efforts, significant depth of evaluati
Alan Wang
Jan 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
Very insightful. Important point on ROI and evaluating shareholder value - best buoyed by competitive advantages such as scale and specialization. Investments must not be made just for sake of growth or because the targeted acquisition is glamorous. Does it bolster competitive advantage?

All competition is to strive for a degree of monopoly.
Aidan Connolly
Mar 31, 2013 rated it really liked it
Entertaining takedown of mogul egomania but more significantly an excellent, thorough dissection of the essence of competitive advantage and its evolution in the media industry. Highly recommended for those interested readers.
Feb 15, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2011
A thorough look at the lack of competitive advantages in the media industry and the foolish CEOs who continue to chase dreams that never materialize. Depressing, the worthlessness of content, but important to know.
Nov 21, 2009 is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Knee/Greenwald/Seave present a succinct and practical lens through which to view business strategy generally, and media strategy specifically. It's excellent.
Nov 01, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Slightly misnamed, very dry econ text of the media industry, but with interesting incites.
Lori Grant
A should-read company profile for knowledge workers, managers, directors, C-levels, and entrepreneurs.
Theodore Kinni
This clear-eyed, no-holds-barred analysis of the media industry debunks the conventional wisdom. It's a terrific book -- coming in Oct.
May 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic strategic study of the media industry and the growth strategies commonly employed
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