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CNBC EXCLUSIVE: CNBC TRANSCRIPT: IAC CHAIRMAN BARRY DILLER SPEAKS WITH CNBC’S JULIA BOORSTIN TODAY

WHEN: Today, Monday, November 13, 2017

WHERE: CNBC's "Power Lunch"

Following is the unofficial transcript of an EXCLUSIVE CNBC INTERVIEW with IAC Chairman Barry Diller and CNBC's Julia Boorstin on CNBC's "Power Lunch" (M-F 1PM-3PM) today, Monday, November 13th. Following is link to the full interview on CNBC.com: https://www.cnbc.com/video/2017/11/13/barry-diller-id-love-to-see-the-trial-between-att-and-doj-over-time-warner-merger.html.

All references must be sourced to CNBC.

MELISSA LEE: SOME OF THE BIGGEST POWER PLAYERS IN THE INTERNET ECONOMY GATHERING TODAY TO DISCUSS BIG ISSUES FACING THEM AHEAD. OUR JULIA BOORSTIN IS THERE IN SAN FRANCISCO IAC'S WITH BARRY DILLER IN A "POWER LUNCH" EXCLUSIVE. JULIA.

JULIA BOORSTIN: THANKS MELISSA. IAC AND EXPEDIA CHAIRMAN, BARRY DILLER, THANKS SO MUCH FOR TALKING TO US. WE WERE JUST ON STAGE HERE—

BARRY DILLER: YES WE WERE. ENDLESSLY.

BOORSTIN: -- TALKING ABOUT SOME OF THE BIG CHALLENGES IN THE INTERNET AND THE MEDIA SPACE. WE ARE IN A NEW ERA OF M&A, OF CONSOLIDATION. DO YOU THINK THE MEDIA COMPANIES NEED TO COMBINE TO BETTER COMPETE WITH THE TECH GIANTS?

DILLER: NOT REALLY. I MEAN, I THINK THAT THEY, LOOK, I THINK THERE'LL BE MORE COMBINATION CONSOLIDATION BECAUSE THAT'S THE WAY OF THINGS, AND ALSO BECAUSE THERE PROBABLY ARE A LOT OF COST SYNERGIES. I DON'T THINK THEY'RE REALLY SALES SYNERGIES, SO TO SPEAK. I DON'T THINK THEY'RE ARE REVENUES SYNERGIES, PARTICULARLY. I DON'T THINK THAT HAVING MORE CONTENT GETS MORE REVENUE OR IN FACT, THE IDEA OF SAYING WE'LL SIZE AND SCALE. THE TRUTH IS THEY ALL HAVE KIND OF SUFFICIENT SCALES TO BE ABLE TO PLAY. WHAT THEY'LL NEVER HAVE AGAIN IS SUFFICIENT SCALE TO DOMINATE THE MEDIA BUSINESS AS THEY HAVE HISTORICALLY. THAT'S OVER.

BOORSTIN: BECAUSE OF THE DOMINANCE OF TECH GIANTS?

DILLER: BECAUSE, ABSOLUTELY. THAT – WHEN YOU HAVE 100 MILLION SUBSCRIBERS AND YOUR BEST HOPE ENTERING IS MAYBE TO GET 20 OR 30, THE MATH JUST OUTDOES YOU. IF YOU''RE GOOGLE AND FACEBOOK WHO HAVE AN ABSOLUTE MONOPOLY ON ADVERTISING, YOU'RE NEVER GOING TO COMPETE WITH THEM.

BOORSTIN: DO YOU THINK AT&T ACQUISITION OF TIME WARNER WILL BE APPROVED BY THE DOJ?

DILLER: I DON'T THINK IT MATTERS, BECAUSE IF THEY DON'T APPROVE IT, THEY'LL WIN IT IN COURT AND THEY SHOULD. I WOULD THINK THEY'LL FOLD, THE GOVERNMENT, BUT WHO KNOWS.I THINK IT WOULD BE A GOOD – I WOULD LOVE TO SEE THE TRIAL. BECAUSE I THINK IT WILL BE DEFINITIVE AND HEALTHY.

BOORSTIN: WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT REPORTS THAT CNN IS A STICKING POINT?

DILLER: I DON'T KNOW. IF THE REPORTS ARE TRUE, IT IS REALLY STUPID. I MEAN, WHAT WOULD PEOPLE, OTHER THAN IF YOU THINK IT GOES TO THE TOTAL POLITICAL, WHICH IS OUR – WHATEVER WE CALL HIM, CAN'T CALL HIM LEADER, BUT THAT HE'S MADE STATEMENTS ABOUT CNN BEING AWFUL AND THIS AND THAT, HE'LL DO DESTRUCTIVE THINGS, PROBABLY IT IS HOGWASH. BUT ON A STRUCTURAL MATTER, WHAT THE HELL DOES CNN PART OF AT&T OR WARNER FUTURE, HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH ANY POSITION IN TERMS OF WHAT'S RIGHT OR WRONG ABOUT MEDIA CONSOLIDATION. IT'S NUTS.

BOORSTIN: DO YOU THINK THAT –

DILLER: SO I THINK IT IS A STRAW MAN.

BOORSTIN: YOU HAVE BEEN A VOCAL CRITIC OF THE PRESIDENT IN THE PAST WE SPOKE BEFORE THE ELECTION AND A COUPLE TIMES AFTER THE ELECTION.

DILLER: I DONT WANT TO GO THERE.

BOORSTIN: YOU DONT WANT TO GO THERE?

DILLER: WHERE WOULD WE GO? THERES NOTHING TO SAY.

BOORSTIN: ARE YOU MORE OR LESS CONCERNED ABOUT HIS POLICIES MORE THAN WHEN WE SPOKE THIS SUMMER?

DILLER: OH, YEAH.

BOORSTIN: WHAT ARE THE POLICIES YOU'RE MOST CONCERNED ABOUT?

DILLER: I THINK – ACTUALLY, LOOK, I THINK WE MAY GET A SENSIBLE TAX REFORM DONE WHICH I THINK IF IT'S HEADING IN THE DIRECTION IT IS HEADING, I DON'T KNOW ENOUGH OF THE DETAIL OF IT, BUT IN THE MAIN, DO WE NEED IT? CERTAINLY WE NEED IT CORPORATELY AND CERTAINLY NEED REPATRIATION OF THE TRILLION OF DOLLARS OFFSHORE. SO IF THOSE GET DONE, THAT'S FINE. EVERYTHING ELSE, TELL ME WHERE THE GOOD IS?

BOORSTIN: WELL I –

DILLER: NO THERE IS NONE.

BOORSTIN: OK, SO—

DILLER: I DON'T THINK IT IS GOOD IN TERMS OF ENVIRONMENT, I DON'T THINK IT IS GOOD, I MEAN – PLEASE WHY MAKE ME RIFF ON LIKE THIS. IT'S WHAT WE ALL KNOW. IT'S REALLY, REALLY CRUMMY.

BOORSTIN: BUT – IN TERMS OF ISSUES LIKE NET NEUTRALITY WHICH IS A BIG TOPIC HERE.

DILLER: CRUMMY AND ALMOST INDECENT. ALL RIGHT. ENOUGH.

BOORSTIN: MOVING ON TO QUESTION, BACK TO M&A.

DILLER: YES. I THOUGHT YOU WERE DOING NET NEUTRALITY.

BOORSTIN: WELL NET NEUTRALITY -- THAT'S A BIG TOPIC HERE, THAT'S A POLICY THAT TRUMP ADMINISTRATION SAID IT IS GOING TO REVERSE. IS THAT PROBLEMATIC FOR YOUR INTERNET COMPANY SINCE YOU RELY ON NET NEUTRALITY?

DILLER: I THINK IT IS OVER. I DON'T CARE WHAT THEY DO ABOUT NET NEUTRALITY. IT IS PRACTICE OF THE WORLD, AND I DO NOT BELIEVE NO MATTER WHAT LAW SUPPORTS OR IS TOSSED ASIDE, THAT NET NEUTRALITY IS NOT GOING TO BE THE WAY THINGS ARE DONE. YOU'RE STILL GOING TO BE ABLE TO PUSH A BUTTON, PUBLISH TO THE WORLD, WITHOUT ANYBODY IN BETWEEN ASKING YOU FOR TRIBUTE. I THINK THAT'S IS NOW JUST THE WAY THINGS ARE DONE. I DON'T THINK IT CAN BE VIOLATED NO MATTER WHAT LAWS ARE.

BOORSTIN: BACK TO M&A.

DILLER: AS A PRACTICAL MATTER.

BOORSTIN: AS A PRACTICAL MATTER.

DILLER: YEAH, YEAH.

BOORSTIN: DISNEY BUYING FOX ASSETS, YOU HELPED CREATE FOX YEARS AGO. DOES IT MAKE SENSE FOR DISNEY TO BUY FOX AND DO YOU THINK IT WILL HAPPEN?

DILLER: WELL, FIRST OF ALL, I HAVE NO CLUE WHETHER IT WILL HAPPEN, SO THAT'S WHATEVER.

DO I THINK THEY'RE -- DISNEY I THINK WISELY, I THINK WHAT BOB IGER HAS DONE IS FANTASTIC. MEAING I THINK HE IS ONE OF THE FEW THAT SAID, "ALL RIGHT, WE ARE GOING TO MAKE A HUGE INVESTMENT ON GETTING A DIRECT RELATIONSHIP WITH THE CONSUMER. WHICH MEANS VARIOUS SERVICES – OVER THE TOP SERVICES – THAT ARE NOT TIED TO THE CLOSED CIRCLE OF GOING THROUGH OTHER DISTRIBUTORS. WE'RE GOING TO GO DIRECT TO THE CONSUMER AND PUT A BIG INVESTMENT BEHIND IT." I THINK THAT'S REALLY SMART TO DO LONG TERM. IF YOU'RE GOING TO DO THAT, THEN YOU WANT AS MUCH PRODUCTION AS YOU POSSIBLY CAN GET YOUR LITTLE HANDS ON SO I THINK IT IS TOTALLY RATIONAL TO WANT TO INCREASE THAT. AND ONLY WAY TO DO IT IS BUY ONE OF THOSE COMPANIES. WHETHER ONE OF THEM WILL SELL TO HIM, DON'T ASK ME.

BOORSTIN: THE OTHER SIDE OF THE MEDIA BUSINESS, THE PIPES, SOFTBANK AND CHARTER, DO YOU THINK WE'LL SEE A DEAL THERE?

DILLER: SOFT BACK AND CHARTER? I THOUGHT YOU MEAN, ALTICE AND CHARTER?

BOORSTIN: CHARTER AND SOMEONE.

DILLER: I DON'T KNOW. CHARTER'S PRETTY GOOD SIZE, BUT I SUSPECT -- I WOULD THINK OVER TIME THERE WILL BE SOME CONSOLIDATION THERE, SOMEHOW. BUT I MEAN, AGAIN, THE BEST HEDGE COMPANY NOW IS REALLY COMCAST. COMCAST IS PERFECTLY RIGHT NOW OF ALL OF THOSE COMPANIES, COMCAST IS THE MOST PERFECTLY POSITIONED BECAUSE THEY REALLY ARE ON THE DISTRIBUTION SIDE IN A SIGNIFICANT WAY AND THEYRE ON THE PRODUCTION SIDE ALSO IN A SIGNIFICANT WAY. WHICHEVER ONE YOU BET ON FOR HAVING THE ABILITY TO GROW IN THIS PERIOD WHEN BIG TECHNOLOGY COMPANIES TAKE OVER ALMOST EVERYTHING, THAT'S A PRETTY GOOD BET.

BOORSTIN: WHAT ABOUT RISK OF CORD CUTTING. HOW BIG A THREAT TO COMCAST AND OTHER MEDIA GIANTS?

DILLER: WELL, I THINK IT DOESN'T MATTER. I THINK FOR CABLE, COMCAST IS A CABLE COMPANY AND A DATA COMPANY. SO FOR COMCAST, IF YOU CUT OVER HERE, MEANING IF YOU CUT THE BIG BUNDLE OR YOU STOP BUYING THEIR PROGRAM, ON WHICH THEY DON'T MAKE THAT MUCH MONEY IN TERMS OF THEIR PROGRAM ASSETS, I'M TALKING ABOUT VIA, THE BIG BUNDLE, THEN THEY'RE GOING TO GET IT ON THE OTHER SIDE IN TERMS OF DATA. SO I DON'T THINK IT MATTERS. I THINK MOST CABLE COMPANIES, HUGE MARGINS ON THE PROGRAM SIDE HAVE SEEN THEM BECAUSE OF THE CAN'T CALL IT GREED, JUST OF THE PRICING POWER THAT CABLE PROGRAMMERS HAVE OVER THE YEARS, SPORTS, ET CETERA. I THINK THEY CONTINUE –

BOORSTIN: SPEAKING OF SPORTS, ARE WE IN A SPORTS BUBBLE? THE RIGHTS ARE MORE EXPENSIVE THAN EVER. NFL RATINGS HAVE BEEN STRUGGLING.

DILLER: DON'T KNOW. I'M NOT ENOUGH OF AN EXPERT TO SAY.

BOORSTIN: A QUESTION ABOUT THIS ERA OF HARVEY WEINSTEIN. YOU'VE BEEN IN THE MOVIE BUSINESS FOR YEARS.

DILLER: NOW, THAT'S A JUMP.

BOORSTIN: IT IS A JUMP.

DILLER: WE'RE GOING. WE ARE.

BOORSTIN: BUT - I HAVE TO ASK YOU BEFORE WE'RE OUT OF TIME. WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR THE CULTURE, INTERNET COMPANIES THAT YOU RUN, HERE IN SILICON VALLEY AND FOR THE MEDIA COMPANIES?

DILLER: I THINK IT GOES WAY BEYOND INTERNET, MEDIA, EVERYTHING I THINK IT IS TRUE ACROSS, CERTAINLY TRUE ACROSS CORPORATE AMERICA WHICH IS FOR WHATEVER REASON, IT IS BEFORE HARVEY AND AFTER HARVEY. AND I REALLY THINK THAT'S WHAT HE IS GOING TO BE REMEMBERED FOR, FORGET MOVIES AND EVERYTHING ELSE. I THINK THAT THIS IS A HUGE TURNING POINT. I DON'T THINK YOU'RE EVER GOING TO GO BACK TO PRACTICES, LET'S EVEN CALL THEM IN THE MAIN, FAIRLY GRAYISH PRACTICES, WHERE CHRISTMAS PARTIES OR PARTIES WHERE EMPLOYEES GOT TOGETHER AND MEN WOULD TAKE SOME ADVANTAGE – THEY WOULD ALL GET DRUNK AN ACT DRUNKENLY. A LOT OF DICEY THINGS HAPPENED. I THINK THAT'S GONE. AND I'M JUST USING THE CHRISTMAS THING AS A LITTLE POINT. BUT I THINK CULTURALLY I THINK THIS IS A HUGE, HUGE SHIFT. NEVER, EVER, IT WILL NEVER GO BACKWARDS.

BOORSTIN: FASCINATING CONVERSATION ALWAYS. WE'LL LET YOU JET OFF TO THE NEXT MEETING. BARRY DILLER, THANKS SO MUCH FOR JOINING US. GUYS, BACK TO YOU.

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CNBC
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e: emma.martin@nbcuni.com

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