Forevergeek has an interesting little analysis that digs into some of the facts behind the inflated figures on Myspace.
The latest annoyance has been the self-indulgent claim of web 2.0 bloggers that MySpace has 100,000,000 users. Interestingly, this specific headline says accounts, but the article and subsequent articles all say users. I would say that anyone with half a clue knows that ‘accounts’ are not the same as ‘users’, but that would be obvious, wouldn’t it?
He concludes that the figures have been blown up by 133%, yet the mediasphere (so, big media and the blogosphere) continue to take them as fact unthinkingly.
This is something that has irked me for a while: you see this happening across all kinds of websites and it is nothing new. People commonly set up accounts which lay dormant and neglected – I know a lot of people who do that, myself included. But people often actively choose to have multiple “faces” because they can – like a public and private persona. This is especially so for virtual worlds such as Second Life.
To me, Myspace is in danger of becoming like networked spam or something similar. A PR clubhouse. I know it has a different feel, but it is Spam 2.0. There are so many bands and brands there, my concept of authenticity is getting muddled. See avatar marketing.