Media Execs Keeping Clear Of Social Networking Sites
Just 9 percent of the media buyers and planners to respond to the MediaPost/Deutsche Bank survey (see related OnlineMediaDaily article) said they are currently buying ads on News Corp's MySpace or other social networking sites. The rest have taken a more cautious wait-and-see approach, or outright rejected the idea.
Some media executives who eschew placing ads on the site said they were troubled by the lack of control over content--a concern that has acknowledged publicly by the company. Ross Levinson, president of Fox Interactive Media, told investors several weeks ago at a Bank of America investor conference in New York that the company was in the process of deleting profiles that included "questionable material." By the end of last month, the community site had removed 200,000 profiles.
MySpace's well-publicized problems stemming from sexual predators on the site also worries media buyers. One media executive advised against placing ads on MySpace because, "There has been too much bad press lately with children being solicited on the Web. Our clients are more conservative."
Another executive was disturbed by the "personal" nature of social networking sites. "We practice higher minded Internet advertising ethics, therefore do not feel personal sites are good venues for intrusive advertising," the executive wrote.
Still, some saw the potential benefit of developing a presence on social networking sites. One executive wrote, "We're recommending it for a retail client targeting young adults."