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Don't expect News Corp. to buy LinkedIn any time soon

Rumors have been circulating that the Rupert Murdoch-owned media company would be purchasing the business-oriented social network. It doesn't seem likely.

Recently, a number of conflicting rumors have been spinning around over media mogul News Corp. potentially wanting to fork over as much as $1 billion for business-oriented social network LinkedIn. Would it sell? Would it really cost that much? Or is it all a load of misinformation?

I met with LinkedIn CEO Dan Nye on Monday while he made the rounds at an NYC press tour, and the company's official comment on the LinkedIn rumors is, well, no comment. However, while speaking about the projected growth of the company from its status as a partner in Google's OpenSocial initiative to an increasingly influential business tool, Nye emphasized that LinkedIn's leadership has "great confidence in our independent path." Plus, News Corp.'s, according to an executive, will be expanding into "professional profiles" soon, which could potentially render a LinkedIn acquisition redundant.

Nye also characterized the back-and-forth frenzy over the buyout rumors as "amusing," and insisted that the company is "not looking at an IPO any time soon" either. Take that as you will.

Besides, the tech gossip mill is already returning to the rumor that News Corp. is after social news site Digg. First, the Wall Street Journal adds Digg buttons, then the Fox Interactive Media-owned Photobucket jumps on board the new Digg Images--the LinkedIn buyout talk is so last month.