Talking tech since 2003

It’s no secret that the once insanely popular social network MySpace has become a fading trend in recent years, and has been abandoned by magnitudes of users in favor of the now-popular Facebook.  With a dying user-base, many have begun to speculate as to the fate of MySpace – now a subsidiary of media empire News Corp. In an effort to combat the downward trend that MySpace was heading in, the site received a number of overhauls last year – inclusive of a redesigned website and new mobile applications – which were meant to modernize the site and give it a chance at becoming prestige again.

While it was a bit unclear as to the exact direction that MySpace was headed in a post-modernized state, recent news coverage has made is apparent that the direction is down – especially for the nearly 500 employees who received pink-slips today from the website that was once seen as a dominant player on the Internet.

This isn’t the first time that MySpace employees saw layoffs.  You see, back in 2008 and into 2009, the company began a slow but steady series of lay-offs that in total axed more than a third of the network’s workforce at the time.  While these layoffs were important at the time, the fact of the matter still remains that this recent announcement of nearly 500 layoffs (which account for about one half of the site’s staff) indicate that the site is shedding employees at an alarming rate; leading us to question the long-term stability of MySpace and how long it will be until News Corp decides to cut their losses and rid themselves of the social networking site altogether.

Ironically, Mike Jones – the CEO of MySpace – has attributed the lay-offs as a result of issues with MySpace’s “legacy business”, and went on to say that it was not an accurate representation of “the performance of the new product.”  Jones was also quick to point out that the revamped portal resulted in a rebound of MySpace users and ultimately lead to approximately 3.3 million new profiles and widespread use of the community-like topic pages.

While this makes sense in theory, the fact of the matter is still that despite any increase in traffic, MySpace is still nowhere near where they once were in terms of users and site popularity.  So while the site may be expanding, I still think that it is still in bad shape and would not be laying off employees if they didn’t have financial reasons to do so.  Think about it.  Wouldn’t it make more sense to re-allocate employees within the organization if the site was doing as well as they say it is?  After all, wouldn’t doing so lead to more ideas and more innovation?

At the end of the day, I have to stick with my initial conclusion that MySpace is simply being held together by the notion that it will soon be a thing of the past for News Corp, and that the prospect of resale in the near future is the only thing that makes the site worth holding on to.

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