de.tech.ting

MySpace'd Out: DeWolfe and Anderson Exit

Posted by andreaitis on April 23, 2009

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Image by Oxfam America via Flickr

I’ts official.  Tom, my oldest friend on MySpace, is leaving.  Of course, he’s everyone’s oldest friend on My Space so I shouldn’t take it personally.  Still, this is a significant moment.  A company that was transformative in  social media is changing hands, and Om Malik is right: it is the end of a social networking era.

It’s also a beginning. The timing is, perhaps, most interesting.  On the heels of Facebook’s worst-received redesign and the upswing in Twitter, the playing field is leveling out.  The next move for each company will determine who will get the momentum.  Long-term vision will determine who will keep it.

The clock has been ticking on MySpace and its executives. Earlier this year COO Amit Kapur and two other long time MySpace employees left the company because their they couldn’t get the contracts they wanted. Their exit was spun by the News Corp. After reading various accounts of DeWolfe’s exit, you can see they left Chris out to dry — something I find particularly distasteful.

Regardless, of his exit, there is a strategy in place that could turn MySpace into decent-enough money maker: MySpace Music. By looking to social network’s musical roots, MySpace executives realized that they could build the MTV of the broadband generation. Combining text, audio, video, and social abilities with its audience, MySpace can thrive as a niche-yet lucrative musical destination. A lot has to go right for that to happen.

With MySpace Changes, a Social Networking Era Ends

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4 Responses to “MySpace'd Out: DeWolfe and Anderson Exit”

  1. If Twitter wants to have staying power they better get their tech support act together. Twice I tried to get it work from my blackberry and it didn’t (there system never responded to my txt msges). It took 3 weeks to get a reply to my email to tech support, by that time the moment has passed.

    I think over the long term Facebook will come out the winner. The speed at which they resigned the personal home page to meet the Twitter challenge shows they don’t intend to be pushed out.

  2. weaverdrew said

    Big changes at MySpace to be sure, but clearly the momentum for the masses resides with Facebook, which seems currently unstoppable. The power of the network there has now spread to several generations. (I don’t think the same can be said of the MySpace audience.)

    This is all despite the wacky growth of Twitter, which remains rather one-dimensional. While entertaining and somewhat addictive, it just doesn’t facilitate the same personal connection as Facebook, IMHO.

    • andreaitis said

      I’d say Twitter is 2D right now: one to one, and one to many. What it’s missing is one to the-ones-that-i-want. If their product roadmap is right, they can surf the wave of momentum and create an even more valuable communication mechanism (not to mention the live search possibilities for trending and data). Robert Scoble put together a very smart vision of Twitter 2012 that includes groups, better direct messaging and location-based information.

      Hey…wait…isn’t that Microsoft’s new product Vine?

      Twitter has the audience. Now they have to keep them.

  3. Basically Tom’s moving out of the projects and on up to the East side.

    The brand has been tarnished enough that going back to the music-hub model might be a hard sell. But whose to say Facebook and Twit won’t find themselves in the same position in a short couple of years? MySpace seemed unstoppable for a while there, but its growth spurt is arguably what damaged the company the most in the long run.

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