News Corp. executive Jeremy Philips wants to get himself LinkedIn. But the business-oriented social network has just hired a fancypants new CEO, Dan Nye, who's told Fortune there's no way. No way, that is, unless Philips and his boss Rupert Murdoch pony up "a lot more" than a $1 billion. Ah, finally Nye is starting to understand the rhetorical game Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg plays so well.
In the spring of 2006, Facebook let it be known that it wouldn't consider acquisition offers under $2 billion. Most laughed it off. But come this fall, of course, Microsoft and Google fought for the privilege to set Facebook's value at $15 billion. Sure, Facebook has the numbers to back the hype, but so does LinkedIn, which actually outgrew Facebook in the past year.