Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Longform Guide to Startup Eulogies

?Part of his challenge, [Chris] DeWolfe says, was the pressure to monetize the site. While developers at Facebook, Tumblr, and Twitter?startups backed by venture capital?were more free to design their products without the immediate pressure of advertising goals, Myspace managers had to hit quarterly revenue targets. That pressure increased dramatically in the summer of 2006, when Google paid $300 million a year for three years to be the exclusive search-engine provider on Myspace on the condition that the social network hit a series of escalating traffic numbers. In retrospect, DeWolfe says, the imperative to monetize the site stunted its evolution: ?When we did the Google deal, we basically doubled the ads on our site,? making it more cluttered. The size, quality, and placement of ads became another source of tension with News Corp., according to DeWolfe and another executive. ?Remember the rotten teeth ad?? DeWolfe says. ?And the weight-loss ads that would show a stomach bulging over a pair of pants???


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