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News Corp to MySpace: Shape Up or Ship Out




“We’ve been clear that MySpace is a problem.”

“The current losses are not acceptable or sustainable.”

They must show improvement in “in quarters, not in years.”

News Corp. president Chase Carey spoke to investors earlier this week and everyone is talking about it. He made it clear that the 70 million drop in ad and search revenue wasn’t going to be tolerated and that without a major improvement MySpace’s days were numbered.

It’s interesting timing. Not two weeks ago, MySpace announced a major overhaul that included a redesign and a focus on entertainment and a younger demographic. The website’s one saving grace over the years has been its popularity with musicians. Back in 2005, shortly after the NewsCorp buyout, MySpace launched its own record label.

“We have marketing power reach at our fingertips,” MySpace CEO Chris DeWolfe said Thursday. He said the relationship with News Corp. could get bands it signs into movies developed by 20th Century Fox and on television shows on the Fox network.”

Their first band was called Hollywood Undead. Maybe that should have been a sign.

So here we are in 2010 and here’s Carey tapping his foot as he waits impatiently for the hordes to return to the once beautiful and powerful Oz. Will it happen? I think it could. But first MySpace has to stop trying to be Facebook. They can’t compete, but they can come back with an entirely different product that gets people excited about social media again.

If MySpace can build an interactive playground focusing on trends in movies, music and TV, they could have something. Facebook doesn’t cut it in this area and neither does iTunes’ new Ping network. Give me a spot that makes it easy to send my friends my favorite clip from a TV show and download the song that played over it and I’d come back to MySpace.

The question is, will they be able to build something new before the NewsCorp clock runs out.

What do you think? Does MySpace have a chance of regaining an audience or will it be on the auction block within a year?

  • http://www.frankthinking.com Frank Reed

    This is like the corporate version of getting a yellow card in soccer. They are on warning but one more screw up and the red card flies! Man this is going to be fun to watch!

  • http://www.michaelgugel.com Michael Gugel

    According to Alexa, MySpace is the still the 41st most popular site. It has enough momentum to be around for a while.

    • Cynthia Boris

      Only if News Corp keeps paying the bills. . . want to buy a slightly used social networking site?

  • Joanne hill

    Myspace are losing more and more people due to all the changes they are making constantly! why on earth would they try to be like facebook!??? facebook is a very poor site that everyone hates!
    People liked myspace because you can make personal pages to suit you add pictures bands can premote there music and a way of doing that was making a page that people would look at and say! WOW!!! big header banners moving flash avatars now it has all been taken away everyday i see people complaining about the new 3.0 layout and the changes they are being forced to make peoples pages are changing automaticly wether they like it or not! is it any wonder that people are leaving when there is a big advertisments smack bang on the right of your page making it look awfull and taking all the space up!! BRING BACK THE 1.0 GOOD OLD MYSPACE DAYS!! change isnt always good and it has just proved the changes they are making people are certainly not liking!

  • http://www.twitter.com/surrealcast Surrealcast

    News Corp bought them out and soon thereafter it started to sink. A younger demographic isn’t going to help them revenue-wise. With the rising number of artists that have switched to SoundCloud, Twitter and Facebook – MySpace needs to go away. It’s similar to Jynco & Paco jeans from 1993-5 that people still wear = euthanasia by force by/for the masses.

    • Ali

      What’s wrong with Jynco jeans? =)

  • Unhappy Myspacer

    What these jokers did to MySpace over this weekend (Nov 5-6-7 in US) was an absolute travesty. The 3.0 upgrade was FORCED upon users while continued press releases keep saying “We listened to what users wanted and here it is.” No polls were taken, no feedback was allowed, all powers that be disabled comments on their own blogs. They have NO CLUE as to just how angry their loyal users are now. The funniest part? The music players don’t work on anyone’s pages and that’s what they say they are trying to push….musicians. LOL! The new home page is an atrocity and there is so much junk on it now that it takes forever to load.

    The forums and blogs (those that still work) are all a buzz with user disgust and anger. Way to go guys.

  • Suzz from MySpace

    I’ve been on MySpace for 6 years. 1.0 was great……..I like 2.0 as well. 3.0 is an absolute nightmare. Granted, they did say they had to work out a lot of bugs, but seriously? Why launch a new format and not give me the choice of whether to upgrade or not? Why fix what wasn’t broken? Why launch something you haven’t even properly worked on, leaving US with mail we can’t read, friend requests that aren’t there, difficulty finding things, no designing my profile…………..not to mention a million other problems 3.0 has brought me. The ads are ridiculous! Huge ones all over the top and all the way down the right half of my screen. My blogs are 3 inches wide. MySpace HAD the best blogging format around. I was given the choice of adding bands or not. Now it’s all over my home page………”add this, follow that”.

    How funny NewsCorp drops the other shoe while My l_________l (that’s a stupid new slogan), launches a wretched new format? Yeah, my days as a blogger on MySpace are numbered. It’s too bad………I’ll miss it.

  • unhappy myspacer girl

    The new myspace layout has left a great deal of users unhappy. The bottom line is that they don’t seem to care what the users think, they are after the almighty dollar. I guess they are more concerned about sponsors than users, but the sponsors are going to see how unhappy a great deal of the users are……and does that make them likely to invest more? If users get so fed up that they leave……the audience for these sponsors dwindle, making the ads much less effective. So wouldn’t myspace be better off offering new versions as an OPTION and allowing the user to decide what suits them best? As far as I’m concerned, more ads…fine, but when I can’t access mail, apps etc etc, I have no reason to return to myspace.