“There is a disconnect with Wall Street because if you’re building a brand, it does take a long time. It’s hard to quantify.”
His frustration: that investors clamored for the iPhone, putting the company in a commitment with "punishing" terms. Short-term desires bested long-term decisions.
A publication, especially an online one, is very much the same. The editor must convince investors -- by way of his publisher, or his general manager, and always his CFO -- that some expenses (certain writers, events, photography, investigative journalism) just won't immediately pay off in a given metric, e.g. pageviews or unique users.
What's your iPhone?