News Corp. unloads MySpace

Terms weren't disclosed but reports valued the deal at between $US30 million and $US40 million

MySpace, which dominated the social-networking market in the mid-2000s before Facebook eclipsed it, has been sold by its parent company News Corp. to digital media company Specific Media, the companies announced on Wednesday.

As part of the agreement, News Corp. will buy a minority stake in Specific Media. Although the financial terms of the deal weren't disclosed, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times are reporting that the price tag was between $US30 million and $US40 million.

That price range represents a small fraction of the $580 million News Corp. paid for MySpace in 2005, when the site ruled the emerging social-networking market.

However, Facebook came on strong in the following years and surpassed MySpace's popularity by 2008 with a cleaner, more elegant interface, a user culture in which most people used their real names, finer privacy controls and a robust platform and community for developers to build third-party applications.

MySpace went through several restructurings, focus changes, management shakeups and rounds of layoffs, but News Corp. couldn't reverse its downward spiral.

As recently as October 2009, Jonathan Miller, who oversees News Corp.'s Internet businesses, pledged that MySpace would recover under the new leadership of former Facebook executive Owen Van Natta and with a focus on music and entertainment. That plan didn't succeed and Van Natta soon left before completing a year at MySpace's helm. MySpace's current CEO is Mike Jones, a former AOL executive.

Founded in 1999 and based in Irvine, California, Specific Media offers online advertising services, such as targeting and measurement, to large brand advertisers through a platform that combines various distribution methods and ad formats.

It's not clear whether Specific Media intends to maintain MySpace as a social-networking site, and if not, what will happen to the user accounts and content members have stored in the site.

Neither News Corp. nor Specific Media immediately responded to requests for comment.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags business issuesInternet-based applications and servicesNews Corp.layoffsMySpace.comsocial networkingsocial mediainternetrestructuring

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Juan Carlos Perez

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?