[The following is a transcript of the speech Khan Manka, Jr. gave at Herb Allen’s Sun Valley Conference today. It has been transcribed from an audio recording made by Mr. Manka. Herb Allen is heard first introducing Mr. Manka – followed by applause and a few audible ‘boos’. This transcription has not been edited or reviewed by Mr. Manka.]
Herb Allen: OK – OK. Can I have the mic up, please? It is? Can I have it louder, please? There we go. There we go. Can I get your attention please, everyone? Terry Semel? Come on, I’m trying to… OK… thank you. Thanks to all of you for moving over here to the Opera House on such short notice. I can’t believe our room was double-booked. I just hope the Morgan Family Reunion finishes earlier than planned so we can move back.
[… incoherent rumblings and chatter – finally it gets quiet…]
Herb Allen: I’ve got a real treat here this afternoon. Over the past couple of years, he’s been quite the Sun Valley Squire – thanks for all the revealing blogs you put out there, Khan. Privacy obviously isn’t one of your concerns! But thanks for the tip on the “Saban” spray tan – I”ll try to get one of those before I leave here.
[Laughs throughout the room.]
Herb Allen: You don’t need me to tell you about Khan Manka, Jr. You hear all you would ever want to hear about it him every night at the bar – except that Singapore midget thing – thanks not right – just horrible, Khan. But anyway, here he is… one of the great moguls right here in our midst – Khan Manka, Jr.
[Applause – some ‘boos’.]
Khan Manka, Jr.: Thanks, Donner. That’s a ‘Mogulympics’ reference from yesterday’s blog. ‘Blog’ makes me sound like I’m a hip new media guy–
Mark Zuckerberg: No… I’m not… at all. I’ve seen it. It sucks. Non-awesome.
[Big laugh from the room.]
Khan Manka, Jr.: OK, OK – you know what? I’m just gonna punt on my prepared remarks because every time I do one of these speeches it ends in fucking chaos. People ‘booing’, fighting… it’s just crazy. If you want to read my speech to CES titled “The Future Is Last Year”, go to the website. I’m gonna wing it, Herb, just finish your wine. I have a few things to say. Look… all I do is speak the truth. And the truth is this: The Hollywood mogul is dead, killed by the geeks.
[Chuckles from a few… one loud “BULLSHIT!”]
Khan Manka, Jr.: No, I’m sorry, Bob – Bob Iger everybody – it’s true. I look around this room – half are not even looking at me, buried in their phones, the other half are looking me but are thinking an afternoon nap sounds really good. Us old media guys don’t stand a chance.
[Silence. A sniffle. A cough.]
Khan Manka, Jr.: This is not just a generational thing. This is a real problem. Technological innovations have been coming at us so fast and furious (right, Ron Meyer?) that the older moguls can’t keep up with the changes AND play golf at the same time. And most of us don’t even want to try. Seriously, I don’t need a goddamned phone every fucking month! And I certainly don’t want to keep digitizing my film library into a new format every couple of months for your stupid new phones!
[A few claps… someone is babbling something incoherently.]
Khan Manka, Jr.: The old moguls, and I suppose you can count me that group, just want to produce really great content, put it in a movie theater or on a television, get reports on the ratings or the box office – and it do all again next week. That’s it. We don’t want that to end. You ‘new media’ types have no respect for that culture. No respect for the work we’ve done. You think it’s easy what we do. ‘Comedy is easy – creating an App, that’s hard.’ I say ‘Go F yourselves.’
[A few claps… more ‘boos’, a few shouts and one “Fuck you, too.”]
Khan Manka, Jr.: Why the hell would Reid Hoffman be considered a mogul? He runs a little chat room for people trying to get work.
[… lots of ‘boos’, shouts and ‘fuck yous’…]
Khan Manka, Jr.: Come on, seriously? A mogul produces movies and TV shows, owns networks and has long lunches at really nice restaurants with other moguls. You new people eat at your desks or the company cafeteria. You don’t produce anything. You have data servers in the Mojave Desert. How the hell that does make you a mogul? How is the Groupon guy a mogul? Freakin’ coupons for laser hair removal? HE’S a mogul?
[… the room is in chaos with shouts, ‘boos’, audible punching sounds…]
Khan Manka, Jr.: WHO THE HELL THREW THAT?!!
Herb Allen: Hold it! Please do NOT throw your cellphones at Mr. Manka! Thank you.
Herb Allen: Khan, listen… LISTEN!!! When I started this conference twenty some years ago, I never intended it to be a “mogul fest” – I was just trying to gather successful, interesting people who run successful, interesting companies. The entertainment people tend to get the most press and so it became known – by the press, which most of the people in this room own and run – as a ‘Mogul Fest’. It wasn’t my intention.
Khan Manka, Jr.: Well… as long as we’re clear that Mark Zuckerberg is not a mogul.
Mark Zuckerberg: Hey, we distribute your shitty movies on Facebook. Nobody buys them, but they are available.
Khan Manka, Jr.: Fine. Fair enough. You’re a mogul. Any questions? If you new media people want to get hammered tonight, I’m buying at the bar.
[Applause… shouts of approval… audio ends.]