The MySpace phenomenon is not that its free platform has an almost unparalleled reach, or that its “anyone or anything is Tom’s friend” stance has yielded 100 million pages of the lowest common denominator of human, animal and product communication; It is that a business savvy multinational publicly traded media empire acquired the quagmire for $580 million, puts tens of millions of dollars into it for annual upkeep and stumbles around for ways to successfully monetize the unwieldy, uncontrolled, commercialized by third parties mess.
GigaOM happily notes that “the foundation of ownership and control for content and distribution is increasingly shifting from corporate entities to people and communities.”
MySpace’s 100 million “friends” are not inherently “in control,” any more than Facebook students are in control (see Web 2.0 'users in control': Of who, and to what means?" and Facebook to students: Zuckerberg and VCs are 'in control').
MySpace is not a mature fruit that blossomed from a well thought out, corporate business plan for rational growth. MySpace is an entangled, treacherous weed that mutated on its own from a Website launched cavalierly by two “cowboys.”
MySpace users do almost what ever they want on their profile pages because MySpace ceded “ownership and control” of the profile pages it hosts from day one.
GigaOm notes that “MySpace is an 'attention page' not a portal page. For millions of users, MySpace is their most important page, the one that has all their attention.”
A typical MySpace user may view his/her/its profile page as his/her/its most important page, but the attention he/she/it gives is to himself/herself/itself, as reflected in the page he/she/it created about himself/herself/itself.
MySpace "friends" are focused on themselves and are giving themselves and their own personal and commercial agendas all the attention, not MySpace or MySpace advertisers.
MySpace has 100 million unfriendly problems; It can’t get the attention of its own "friends" and it can’t convince blue chip advertisers to give its 100 million "friends" attention.