Twitter looking to fill board set with media executive

Steven Loeb · September 25, 2012 · Short URL:

By looking toward entertainment industry, is Twitter evolving into a media company?

Twitter has an open spot on its board of directors, and, if reports are accurate, there may be some Hollywood bigwigs vying to take the position.

Twitter is interviewing players in the entertainment industry for its board of directors, AllThingsD reported Tuesday.

The seat that Twitter needs to fill is that of Flipboard founder Mike McCue, who stepped down from the board of directors in August. It is speculated that McCue left his post due to a possible conflict between Twitter and Flipboard, which is a social network magazine app.

Chief among those being considered for the job is Hollywood executive Peter Chernin, who has experience as the head of a leading media company, as well as developing products online.

Cherin formerly worked at News Corp. from 1996 to 2009, serving as President and COO. Since leaving, he founded The Chernin Group, which has produced movies such as Rise of the Planet of the Apes, as well as television shows, such as New Girl and Touch, both of which air on Fox. Cherin was also instrumental in the formation of the Hulu premium online service, and is also on the board of director for Pandora music service.

Sources told AllThingsD that Chernin is still deciding if he wants to join the board, and that Twitter is still in the early stages of finding a replacement for McCue.

No other possible candidates for the position were mentioned.

What does this mean for Twitter?

That Twitter, whose board is currently made up of people from the tech industry, would be looking toward the entertainment industry for such a crucial position may say something about its future.

Over the past year, Twitter has taking steps to transform itself from a social network into a media company, where users consume content rather than create it, in order to make more money from advertising.

This summer, Twitter partnered with Nascar, to allow users to “experience events” on its iPhone with special hashtags such as #NASCAR, which will allow users to get special content, such as Tweets from drivers and photos. Then Twitter made a deal with NBC to create an Olympics hub, in which Twitter served as an official narrator for the live events.

Yesterday it was reported that Twitter founder Biz Stone was teaming up with director Ron Howard on a new movie that will be inspired by tweeted photos. Hopefully that project will go better than the last time someone decided to make a product based on Tweets. (Remember the TV show $h*! My Dad Says, with William Shatner from a couple of years ago? I’m sorry if you do.)

Just today it came out that Twitter may be changing how it determines the influence of a Twitter user; it will no longer be just about how many people follow that person, but many view the content they create.

By bringing someone in with experience in the media world, it will strengthen its relationship with other media companies.

Twitter could not be reached for comment.

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