What is Murdoch seeing in Myspace?

Fresh off a cover profile in Wired and now the owner of what has recently become the USA’s most visited site, Rupert Murdoch seems to be invincible. And while I may not be a huge fan of the way Murdoch lets his news rooms run, I have to say that I do respect and to some extent admire the way he sees the world of mass media. He knows how to capture attention and how to turn that attention into profit. After all that IS the name of the game in the world of big media.

When seen in this light it’s no real wonder that Murdoch’s interest would be piqued by Myspace. The site has quickly grown to be the lead attention grabber on the net and continues to grow at a feverish pace… it’s new users per day equals roughly the circulation of one of Murdoch’s newspapers. So it’s a no brainer right? Plunk down $580 million for the eyeballs and worry about guiding them into profit later. It can’t be that hard to convert attention to money… that’s what media is.

Still, one look at Myspace and I have to question what the fuck Rupe sees here. I’ve tried… on numerous occasions… to find something of interest or lasting value there, but I just see cheap plastic community. Substance… in technical infrastructure, features, and content… seems to be largely absent. In fact I’d be reluctant to call Myspace a community at all. If anything it’s a scene… a trendy club… a kind of cultural fad that inevitably flames out. Would you pay $580 million for a scene?

Murdoch did and for now I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt that he knows what he’s doing. If he can make it work he’ll be building the next generation’s MTV. But if Myspace is indeed built on the kind of fleeting, me-too, where’d you get those shoes, mentality that most scenes live and die on, he just paid $580 million for Studio 54.


5 thoughts on “What is Murdoch seeing in Myspace?

  1. You answered your own question already because what Rupe sees in MySpace is exactly what you say, cheap plastic community, and cheap plastic community has been selling out the ass everywhere for at least the last thirty years. Cheap plastic shit outsells everything else in the pop, hip-hop and rap music world, as well in Hollywood, the book industry, WalMart, the auto industry, Microsoft, video games, prescription drugs, the slip-shod construction of strip malls and cookie-cutter condos and townhomes… just to name a few. Cheap plastic shit sells, sells, and sells more and more to more and more Americans every day and it has strangled the rest of the planet and it is all George Bush’s fault.

  2. That’s true, but cheap plastic shit is also disposable and it moves from place to place. I guess the real question is what kind of return will he see on his $580 million before Myspace flames out… as it looks like its doing now. Do a google news search on myspace to see all the problems their starting to have.

  3. In that case, my feeling has been that the whole MySpace thing was marketed solely for the purpose of databasing information about everyone and that Rupe must have other financial interests in monitoring individual’s interests.

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