News Corporation Chairman Rupert Murdoch has referred to Google "stealing" or "taking" his copyright. His Wall Street Journal lieutenant Robert Thomson has likened the company to a "parasite or tech tapeworm." But now News Corp. needs to renegotiate a lucrative MySpace ad deal with Google. Whoops.
News Corp.'s social network is near the end of an advertising partnership with Google reportedly worth $300 million per year. Any sequel to the arrangement is expected to be worth considerably less.
Speaking at News Corp.'s D tech conference, which runs concurrent with Google's own I/O conference in San Francisco, MySpace executives insist they're not sweating. There's a year and a half left in the existing deal, CEO Owen Van Natta said, and it constitutes less than half MySpace's revenue.
Translation: MySpace has bigger problems to grapple with, like a recent poll showing 6 in 10 users are using the site less than they used to. And besides, there's plenty of time for the young and old generations of media moguls to patch things up with one another.