MySpace has seen its audience numbers plummet precipitously over the past several years. Now, its roster of employees is following suit.
The News Corp.–owned site announced on Tuesday (Jan. 11) that it has laid off 47 percent of its staff, or roughly 500 employees. The staff reductions had been rumored for weeks as News Corp. appears to be preparing MySpace for a possible sale—or even a shutdown.
According to a statement released by MySpace CEO Mike Jones, the cuts were a long time coming and not indicative of any problems with the recently revamped version of the site. The new entertainment-focused MySpace has actually been well received by critics—and the company claims this has resulted in more than 3 million new members.
“With our recent relaunch as an entertainment destination for Gen Y, we introduced a much tighter focus, a significantly streamlined product and an updated technology platform,” Jones wrote. “Today’s tough but necessary changes were taken in order to provide the company with a clear path for sustained growth and profitability. These changes were purely driven by issues related to our legacy business, and in no way reflect the performance of the new product."