I first joined MySpace some time in 2004. I’ve quit twice since then and right now I’m working on a third.
But this time, I really mean it.
I still don’t know why I’m on it now, other than to satisfy the slim number of friends I have who refuse to commit to Facebook. (Jerks.)
Today, I was reminded of how much MySpace has become obsolete by an article in Crain’s New York Business.
Now, MySpace is losing traffic and has been pushed aside by newer social networking sites Facebook and Twitter. Last week, the blog TechCrunch reported that up to 500 employees out of nearly 3,000 could soon be laid off at MySpace parent Fox Interactive Media, which just backed out of a move to spacious new headquarters in Los Angeles.
No one’s calling Mr. Murdoch a visionary now.
Advertising revenue for Fox Interactive fell 16% in the quarter that ended March 31. News Corp. does not break out numbers for MySpace, but the site makes up the biggest part of the division.
Hurt by competition and its own mismanagement, MySpace has become a textbook case of how quickly a digital juggernaut can become a has-been. Now News Corp. is promising that executive suite changes will make MySpace a winner again—even as analysts are forecasting it will continue to lose market share.
Market share. That’s business speak for popularity. You know, the kind of popularity it lost because it failed to account for the ever-changing Facebook (which listens to its users) and foresee the overall dynamic-ness of Twitter. Yeah, they’re losing market share in droves.
But I don’t think that’s why I’m about ready to give up on MySpace. I’m pretty sure the reason I want to get rid of it because it doesn’t provide tools for a person or group to help promote their craft outside of music. Two things MySpace can address that will take my finger off the delete account button now:
- Intuitive, built-in apps: Both MySpace and Facebook have a problem of too many ridiculous third-party applications that in general aren’t worth anyone’s time of day. But Facebook does a good job of the basics with a robust calendar that is integrated into the site, photos that are managed well, and a chat function that doesn’t take minutes to load (on high speed internet nonetheless). And my personal favorite, the ability to share an RSS feed for a personal blog not on site. If MySpace could find a way to incorporate its calendar and events function into more of its site, it could be the saving grace, especially as it becomes more and more intertwined with the music industry. But it would help to diversify its uses by having in-house applications to take care of RSS feeds for the million and one bloggers in the world like myself.
- Cleanliness is next to Godliness: I can’t stress this enough. MySpace doesn’t appeal to me as a Web user because it is the junkiest piece of crap on the internet. Everybody and their momma thinks they know HTML after playing around on it. And everybody breaks the rules, let’s their pictures run wild and have a million and one videos/graphics/songs loading onto their profile pages. It’s come to the point where I’m not really interested in looking at it because there’s no information to glean, just pictures and music. It has to offer something else to be worthwhile. At least for me. Facebook, in this sense, is the anti-Christ of MySpace.
Look, I’ve made my case. But I’m sure there are actual hardcore MySpace users out there (minus musicians) who have gripes and praises alike for their daily affliction. As it stands, the site is still the gorilla in the room traffic-wise.
Can I get an amen? Hell no?
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