SOCIAL NETWORK Facebook is hoping to establish ties with Hollywood in a further expansion of its social media business.
The company is on the lookout for a big name executive to help forge a deal with the film and music industries, according to Reuters.
The person apparently tipped for the job is Jason Hirschorn, a former MTV executive and former co-president of Myspace, giving Hirschorn an already comfortable insight into both media and social networking circles.
One source told Reuters that Facebook's opinion of the media industry has changed over recent months, and that it no longer considers itself simply a venue on which to launch, but a viable business partner for Hollywood.
Rival social network Twitter has already hired someone to handle its Hollywood ties. In November it brought aboard Omid Ashtari, a former executive with the Creative Artists Agency. Myspace is already big with the music industry and is likely to grow further in that direction with its new owner Justin Timberlake. In remain competitive, Facebook does not want to seem uninterested in the media companies, one source reported.
Facebook already has some media ties with its COO Sheryl Sandberg, who joined the Walt Disney board of directors in December 2009, not to mention that Netflix CEO Reed Hastings joined Facebook's board of directors last June. It has also struck deals with Warner Brothers and Universal Pictures to rent and view films on its web site.
The move by Facebook is likely also a reaction to Google's entry into the social networking market with Google+, the biggest threat to Facebook to date. Facebook has attempted to battle Google+ by implementing a number of changes to how it shares things, but it will need to up the ante to stop people from switching to its new rival altogether.
Facebook is expected to announce some of its media plans tomorrow at its developer conference in San Francisco, including unveiling a new music feature. µ
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