Blog Post

What Happens When MySpace Founders Leave?

I’m being slightly sensationalist here in extracting the last paragraph of this long cover story in the latest Fortune story about MySpace and the founders, but it is a valid question to ask. The question is not if, but when, similar to when Lloyd Braun will exit from Yahoo.
The story portrays the founder Chris DeWolfe and Tom Anderson as being polar opposites of each others (not a secret), and both feeling the pressure to commercialize and make the world’s biggest site into a distribution arm for the vast repository of News Corp content.
Their contracts expire in about a year from now, in October 2007…”They won’t talk about their plans, but friends say that the guys really don’t know what they’ll decide a year from now. As [News Corp COO Peter] Chernin puts it, ‘It will become apparent whether it’s meant to be. I mean that in a mutual sense. Their lives have changed. They need to find their lives exciting and engaging.’ At this moment at least, Anderson says he’s excited enough: ‘I’d like to do this as long as it’s fun, and that could be a long, long time.’ DeWolfe is more cautious. ‘It’s pretty simple…As long as we both enjoy walking in the door each morning and we maintain a certain autonomy and we control the direction of the site …’He stops there. He’ll stay at MySpace if he gets all that? Not so fast. ‘Just say we’re happy working here.'”