What Happens When MySpace Turns Out To Be Their Space?

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It’s a tricky thing for a company — convincing people that they have a space of their own (as long as they follow certain communal rules) while retaining control over what actually happens there. In the past, when MySpace exercised its technological ability to block other services from being integrated into its members’ pages, the Fox Interactive Media flagship often blamed it on faulty coding or some other error. The fix would be made and it seemed like most of the members would quiet back down– usually after blaming Rupert Murdoch for being greedy even when he had nothing to do with it. But, as the NYT lays out, MySpace has been limiting non-News Corp. embedding intentionally, irking some of its devoted following including MySpace poster girl Tila Tequila. Turns out she was using a player and music store called the Hooka from Indie911 and MySpace co-founder Tom Anderson was upset. The player disappeared, yanked, MySpace told the NYT, by Tequila herself after she heard from Anderson. (Really, of all the people to honk off, why pick one with 1.7 million “friends” unless you want to make a very big point?)
MySpace says it violates the TOS to embed widgets that sell or advertise without authorization or without doing it as a partnership with the company. On the front end it makes sense. Why should anyone besides News Corp. be able to deliver ads and conduct transactions on its own social network? It’s blocked Revver although it never managed to stick with blocking YouTube despite some blips. That still rankles as is apparent in this comment from FIM chief revenue officer Michael Barrett a few weeks ago: “We probably should have stopped YouTube. YouTube wouldn

2 Comments

NURREDIN

Firstly Myspace is free to the users, even those attempting to sell products on it. Where else are you going to go? If You don't like Myspace's rules, try creating your own community and see how far you get.Tila is irrelevant, and I'll tell you why. First off a lot of people with no knowledge of how Myspace works are impressed with her 1.7 million "friends". Everyone with a music page knows there are companies that will get you 100,000 friends in 30 days for a $1500.00 fee.All she did was pay theses guys ten times to get her "friends". Look at her sales on Itunes. With 1.7 million friends, she only moved 13,000 units. That tells you she's got phony "friends" produced by a "bot" program which Myspace no longer allows you to use. Myspace is a business, and they have a right to do whatever the heck they wanna do.Noone's leaving Myspace in droves because the only people using this technology are people trying to sell something and Myspace knows they have no real competition. It's a non-issue. Most of the people on Myspace merely have "vanity" sites for their own use. The music community isn't leaving because we've nowhere else to go (for free).Myspace is just a tool to drive people to Itunes or your personal website. If you want to sell a bunch of stuff, do it on your own website!

NURREDIN
http://WWW.NURREDIN.COM
http://WWW.MYSPACE.COM/NURREDIN

Lucas Dickey

Though the NYT article was titled "MySpace Restrictions Upset Some Users", it may as well have been: "Tila Tequila Reveals MySpace's Greed". On the one hand I can see why Fox Interactive and MySpace would want to protect this little walled community that they have created and control all profits that flow from it, but I think they might want to be wary of both history's lessons and the consequences of biting (or chastising) the hand that feeds them.

It's the users that make the service what it is. And the sheer volume at that. But start creating stumbling blocks in their creative (and sometimes entrepreneurial) paths (or in this case, enforcing that fine print), and MySpace risks hemorrhaging users all over. It should bend over backwards to meet their needs, because the day that users find themselves restricted and start seeking freedom elsewhere, MySpace will find out just how intrinsically linked that user volume is to its ad-supported profitability.

(Originally posted on my blog, SeattleSteez.com)

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