Transparency killed MySpace

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I recently had a conversation with a friend of mine about how she was “leaving” her MySpace account. The only thing left that she liked was the music service but had other sources for that. She also said she was “growing out” of her MySpace persona. I’ve never had a MySpace account and this comment made no sense to me. She then explained that MySpace, for most, was about portraying an alternate personality. Kind of a micro-celebrity. Who you wish you were.

As most know by now, transparency is one of the key behavioral characteristics of social media. When I share information on Facebook I do it as myself not an some alter-ego. (This is not the same as multiple persona disorder, which is being transparent across all social networks whether they have a professional focus such as LinkedIn or a personal focus like Facebook. Transparency is the norm and according to my friend, MySpace does not focus on this.

Not sure what is going to happen to MySpace, but I do know that transparency among people online is the norm and businesses struggle with this new paradigm. How much should we as a business share? How do I control those that represent my business? The answer many times is that you, the founder of the business must participate in social media. If you can’t then it boils down to trust. (Yes. Many think of trust as a four letter word and yet sometimes you have to trust those you empower. That’s the definition empowerment.) It is startling to think how much the new online landscape is going to transform businesses.

Viva la Evolution!

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I'm an Associate Teaching Professor of Digital Marketing at the Daniels College of Business, University of Denver. I also consult with startups and established brands. I'm currently focused on artificial intelligence, cognitive neuroscience and culture. I am married to an amazing woman and have two incredible children. I was raised in Colorado and spend my free time with family, biking, snowboarding and going to the Pacific Ocean to SCUBA dive and/or surf. I'm passionate about architecture, design, street art, photography and the art that tattooing has evolved into.

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