Time, Inc. to buy (what’s left of) MySpace

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MySpace was once the most popular social media network in the 2000s, but Facebook’s rapid rise turned MySpace into a mix of nostalgia and a punchline by the 2010s. Since then, it’s been bought and sold by a few others, including Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. MySpace has also tried changing its focus from a general social network into a music-oriented one.

Now, MySpace is gaining yet another new owner. This time, Time, Inc. is now MySpace’s newest owner, via purchasing its parent company. Time, Inc. is the recently spun-off print media publisher of “Time,” “Sports Illustrated,” “Entertainment Weekly,” and so forth.

What this means for MySpace’s future isn’t clear, though I have my doubts it’ll mean much. Once-popular social network Friendster was sold to Malaysian owners in the late 2000s and tried to become a social gaming-oriented site in 2011, but shut down completely in 2015. And Twitter’s recent changes show that even modern social networks are having problems going up against entrenched social network Facebook.

Time, Inc. mostly bought MySpace’s parent company Viant (an advertising tech firm) for its ad-related aspects. However, The Verge notes that MySpace does still get millions of visitors per month, compared to the declining revenues for Time, Inc., which saw a 6.6% decline in print and other ad revenue since 2014. The publisher also lost $881 million, most which it blames on a recent headquarters move.

I never used MySpace myself even back in its heyday, so I don’t have much nostalgia for it. I’m not sure how MySpace could regain any relevance at this point, besides maybe trying to replace the now-faltering SoundCloud?

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  1. This is a classic example of some old people buying something they don’t really know what it is. Some higher-ups at Time probably thought, “oh wow, let’s buy MySpace, we can revitalize it.” Not realizing there is no hope for this dead brand. Perhaps they see some sort of parallel with their own brand at Time.

  2. I signed into MySpace today. I’m rather impressed by their player. The “stream” updates you whenever there is a new track or album on Youtube–based on your following list. (MySpace calls the follower list “Connections”)

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