Note: UPDATES AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS POSTING!
As previously mentioned, I’m truly not a billionaire hater – but, Rupert Murdoch’s $580 million purchase of MySpace was stupid. That is, unless the deal has already somehow paid itself off in 3 years. If that’s the case, I stand corrected.
Reasons it was a stupid investment being a) facebook (I’ve embarrassingly joined recently but I’m glad I graduated from MySpace) kicks MySpace’s a$$ hands down and b) social networking is dead or in the process of dying.
Why is facebook better than MySpace will ever be? It’s built by geeks. Note: I love geeks. Anywho, the reportedly cocky CEO (Mark Zuckerberg) seems like a dork. A very, very wealthy dork. But, he knows how the build things people want – a clean interface (for the most part) without too many annoying customizations, a kick a$$ mobile platform for those that have the capability to access sites via blackberries/smart phones/i phones, and text message alerts allowing you to actually manage some features of your account via a simple text message.
I messed around with MySpace mobile a little bit last night. It was worthless. MySpace will undoubtedly try to implement some of facebook’s technology – if they haven’t already via beta – but, needless to say, they’re behind the times and can’t catch up. Imagine the current day Google vs. Yahoo search engine “battle.”
For what it’s worth, the problem with social networking sites is that none of the sites really offer any value to the user other than the ability to keep up/reconnect with your friends. They’re addictive for a week and then become boring.
Both MySpace and facebook can be compared to Yahoo in the 90’s and Classmates.com in the early 2000’s. Yahoo is in the process of failing as a search engine turned into a search engine/social portal because they didn’t realize the value and money to be made off paid search and not social networking. Classmates.com failed (or isn’t worth as much as it used to be) because it was bland/useless and charged user fees when incepted.
So, congrats to MySpace for ripping off Rupert. Dollars currently spent by advertisers on either website is money worthlessly spent. Let’s see if facebook can start offering users the ability to do more than join some networks, create a witty status message, easily chat with friends currently online (sort of cool), post some picture albums, write on a wall or two, and “rekindle” previous relationships.
If not, we’ll all be laughing in 10 years when everyone jokes, “Remember when MySpace and facebook were popular?”
Update from 6/2008:
Update from 8/2008: