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Staffing Report: More Changes at MySpace, New Chip Specialist at Apple

staff report metueLast week, new News Corp digital chief Jon Miller began reassigning offices at MySpace.  Founder Chris DeWolfe was out, and former Facebook Chief Revenue Officer Owen Van Natta was in as CEO.

This week, the process continued.  Van Natta started today and more management moves followed. Tops among the new hires: Mike Jones, formerly of Time Warner and several startups, joins the group as Chief Operating Officer.

Complimenting Van Natta’s business development and strategy chops, Jones comes to MySpace as a well regarded tech savvy operating executive.   Previously he founded Userplane, a social networking application developer that has counted MySpace, Friendster and eHarmony as clients.  AOL bought the company in 2006 during  Jon Miller’s tenure at the helm. 

While at Time Warner, Jones was focused on social media monetization and widget distribution. (Jones personal website is found here)

In addition to Mike Jones, also joining MySpace’s executive suite and reporting to Van Natta will be Jason Hirschhorn.  Hirschhorn was most recently president of Sling Media’s Entertainment Group.  Prior to working at Sling, he served as chief digital officer for MTV Networks with responsibility for the company’s digital media businesses, products and strategies.   At MySpace he will take the title of Chief Product Officer.

The new trio of top execs at MySpace will likely spend some time getting acclimated but once settled, another round of news and change is expected.

In other staffing related news to start the week…..
Apple has hired highly regarded graphics chip specialist Bob Drebin to serve as a senior director.  Drebin was formerly chief technology officer at AMD’s graphics group, joining the company through its acquisition of ATI in 2006.  Prior to that, he was at Silicon Gaphics for nine years and from 1984 to 1989, he was at Pixar, joining from its inception as a LucasFilm spinoff.  Drebin also worked at ArtX where he was credited, among other things, with designing the graphics chip used on Nintendo’s prior generation GameCube console.

There’s no word on what Drebin will focus on at Apple, or if it’s in any way tied to the company’s acquisition of PA Semi last year.  (More on that acquisition can be found here and here)

The story was first reported by the UK’s Inquirer and has since been confirmed by Drebin’s linked in profile.

Related Articles from Metue
News Corp Starts Mixing Up MySpace: Founder Out
Jon Miller Takes On News Corp Role (External)
Shuffling Executives: News Corp Makes More Changes
Chernin Out at News Corp – Full Details and Departure Memos
• Inside Apple and PA Semi: Part 1, the Micro Perspective
• Inside Apple and PA Semi: Part 2, the Macro Perspective


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