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NOT EVEN A DREAM: Now that The Daily Beast and Newsweek merger talks have officially fallen apart, did Tina Brown ever daydream about the fun she could have if she ran Newsweek? “No, no,” she said Tuesday night at Cipriani 42nd Street at a gala celebrating The Norman Mailer Center and The Norman Mailer Writers Colony. “I could see a point down the line when it might have been fun,” she continued, raising an eyebrow. “Having done it, by the way, three times — turnaround things — I have no illusions about how hard it is to turn things around. It was because I knew how hard that was that I was very cautious. As was Barry [Diller, the Beast’s owner]. We both are quite unromantic about what it takes. We knew it was going to be a heck of a challenge, and a tough one.”
She reiterated her talking points — the governance structure wasn’t clear — and that she and Diller couldn’t get on the same page with Newsweek owner Sidney Harman about reporting structures.
But now that’s she’s once again devoted herself fully to life on the Web, has she bought into the iPad magic and bought one? “Yes I did! I love my iPad,” she said. She said she loved how it has “a sort of luxurious, glossy feel” to it.
But she added the Beast wouldn’t be building an iPad app any time soon.“We’re not having an iPad app yet because we feel the site already looks so great on the iPad, actually,” she said, referring to the way users can read it off Safari. She said considering how quickly things evolve and change in the digital world, it’s best to watch from the sidelines for now.
“We have to decide,” she continued. “At some stage, we probably will. But right now we decided not to do it immediately.”
— John Koblin