Ali interviewed James Spanfeller (CEO, and Roger McNamee (Managing
Director, Elevation Partners) as the opening session at FOBM.
Partners bought a stake in Forbes
in August 2006.

are some excerpts.

What does
Forbes stand for right now?

JS: We
think the web is a platform. It powers the ability to have a lot of media
formats in one place. It’s not just
about text. It’s about real time
elements. The brand is on one hand
analogous to offline companion and on the other it’s completely apart. “We’re not Forbes magazine online. We provide
a different service to our end users who go to online for different reasons”
than they consult the magazine.

hasn’t the magazine changed in a long time?

RN: “I
look at this as an investor. It serves a
specific purpose. The audience for
business journals today needs something that wasn’t possible before the
internet. Not just data but interpretation
of it and debate around it. The magazine
will change when the audience needs it to change.”

reason Elevation got involved with Forbes is because Forbes looked at the web
as a unique platform. People start off
reproducing the old on the new. But the
people that win let the new run.”

RN: The
audience wants to get engaged with the content. We’re bringing the audience into our content. We’re doing a lot of
experiments – some will work, some will not.

Roger, I couldn’t agree with you more!