MySpace for Sale: It’s easy being $Green for the Murdoch Property

Just a reminder, although I’m sure you all know. So-called Web 2.0 services are being shaped to help advertising and marketing. Users should beware—and be informed—about what kind of deals are being made now that big media companies such as Murdoch’s News Corp./Fox owns the 100 million user MySpace site. For example, what exactly happens when you visit all those “friends” pages placed by Burger King, Wendy’s and Jack in the Box? For a list of companies plying “profiles” of their brands on MySpace, click here.

Evidence that MySpace is for sale to marketers was yesterday’s announcement that its homepage was sold for a day to the new youth-targeted TV network run jointly by CBS and Time Warner—called CW. On September 20, which is the day CW officially begins operations, MySpace’s “skin will be made over in CW green, with prominent mentions of the debut that night of “America’s Next Top Model.”

We have nothing against folks making a digital dollar. But some limits and safeguards are required—including a clear delineation between interactive advertising/marketing and content. Full disclosure about exactly what advertisers are getting for their sponsorship is also a must. It seems that MySpace is becoming “MySpaceforsale Space.”

[source: “Inside Move: CW Marks a MySpace Page.” Josef Adalian. Variety, August 31, 2006. Subscription required]

Author: jeff

Jeff Chester is executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy. A former journalist and filmmaker, Jeff's book on U.S. electronic media politics, entitled "Digital Destiny: New Media and the Future of Democracy" was published by The New Press in January 2007. He is now working on a new book about interactive advertising and the public interest.

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