Posts Tagged ‘Facebook’

MySpace – $30 billion to zero?

Monday, December 1st, 2008
Image representing MySpace as depicted in Crun...

Image by via CrunchBase

I have just read Jon Fine’s column in Business Week – he interviewed Michael Wolff, who wrote the new Rupert Murdoch bio The Man Who Owns The News Here is an exerpt:

Michael Wolff: MySpace. They [meaning News Corp] know they have a huge problem. They’re quaking in their boots about MySpace. It always was a little rustling when I was there, there was this rustling—

Jon Fine: What do you identify as the problem?

MW: Facebook.

JF: OK. But Facebook is still smaller in America, and—

MW: Absolutely. But you know the rhythms of the Internet business, which I think are still, at this point, immutable. Something else comes along – a better technology, a better flavor of the month – and you, the former, are downgraded. Possibly to the point of being downgraded out of existence.

You can read the whole article here.

I have been an avid follower of MySpace v Facebook over the last 3 years. The two businesses initially had markedly different strategies. MySpace traded on being the cool place to hang out, driven by its band pages. Facebook has always been focused on being a “social utility”, replicating real world relationships online and providing new and innovative ways of communicating with friends on many different levels.

About a year ago, MySpace finally did something about the usability of its site – it redesigned its profile pages and introduced a range of Facebook like features.

The problem MySpace has, is that it does not really know what it is. There are now lots of places to find and share music and videos which work better than MySpace (LastFM, YouTube etc) and it is not as good at connecting people as Facebook. With no USP and some highly focused and ambitious competitors you can understand why News Corp might be losing sleep about MySpace.

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