Pictured is Jakob Lodwick, of College Humor, lurking in the future new office of his InterActiveCorp overlord Barry Diller. Still undecided: where the obsidian sacrificial altar should go. Really needs to be next to a load-bearing wall. On a more sunny though still mystical note, the New York Times peeks into the IAC crystal ball by way of a profile on Michael Jackson, Diller's point man on most things Webward. Nothing shocking, though it's almost comical to consider the vast intellectual resources bent toward the creation and curation of Very Short List — IAC's recently debuted once-daily email of recommended stuff. In addition to Jacskon and, one presumes, Diller, you also have pillar o' the community Kurt Andersen, plus design input (at least initially) Bonnie Siegler and Emily Oberman. We all need smarter people to tell us what to buy these days. Besides the new digs, what's next on the IAC conquest plan?

Apparently it's another attempt to clone the Onion, though this time with an infusion of Daily Show DNA by way of the Huffington Post. Slated for birth in 2007, the "continuously updated satirical Web site" will "deliver throughout the day the kind of humor that has been the preserve of late-night talk-show hosts like Conan O'Brien and the Comedy Central stalwarts Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert." The site will be overseen by one Ben Wikler, "a comedy writer who has worked closely with Al Franken." With luck, Wikler will bring a little of that Air America magic to the table.

Diller claims no interest in big-ticket acquisitions, dismissing such as the domain of "media imperialists." He and Jacskon prefer "starting their own ventures and investing in nascent ones." So no Facebook-style deals, but when you're talking nascent, you can't ever be too nascent to attract (or continuously plead for) a little investment injection.

Most pregnant with foetal potential is one final throwaway line in the NYT article, reading thusly:

[Jackson] said his next area of focus might be news — a site that aggregates and edits news and helps point people to the best information available — but he was not ready to talk about specifics.

"Might be" you say? Well, in the absence of specifics, we're all for rampant, uninformed speculation. We ourselves might have a few ideas as to what Jackson might be talking about, but we're open to hearing your own guesses. Do tell.

Diller's Web: Think Cable of the Past [NYT]
[Photo: zachklein]