MySpace traffic down, uncertainty up

Site's managers don't seem to know what to do with the fallen star

By Kim Peterson Nov 5, 2009 12:32PM
MySpace is losing so many visitors that it probably won't get all of the $900 million it expected from a key Google deal.

That's a pretty devastating blow for the site, which signed the search deal with Google back in 2006, when it was still one of the Internet's crown jewels.

But now, MySpace has lost too much ground to Facebook and Twitter. And it's looking like Google won't even have to make the minimum payments promised under the deal. Google was supposed to pay at least $900 million based on certain traffic milestones, but those aren't being met.

It's unclear how much of that $900 million is going to be missed. In Wednesday's News Corp. (NWS) earnings call, Rupert Murdoch appeared to suggest $300 million, according to MediaMemo. But the company later clarified that it would be closer to $100 million for the year.

At any rate, it's not a good sign for MySpace, which now says it's "not trying to beat Facebook." Or Twitter.

So what is MySpace actually trying to do?

"It's a work in progress," executives said repeatedly during the call, according to MediaMemo.

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