It looks like MySpace is stepping on to CCI’s turf. For those who don’t know about CCI, it’s Community Connect, the parent company behind ethnic community sites like BlackPlanet.com, MiGente.com, and AsianAvenue.com, as well as a GLBT site and faith-based site. MS’s parent, News Corp., must be smelling all that immigrant money. (J/K) But seriously, why else make a Latino site if a good portion of your current base is already Latino? No reason to do that unless you want to extend that base, which ultimately means you want more of the money you can make in and from that demographic.
I didn’t even intend to write this post. It just sort of happened, because it’s not that I visit MySpace all that often. I just happened to be over there and noticed a notification or two about MySpace Latino and its official launch on April 11. Interestingly enough, I can’t find any news articles about the upcoming launch or any blog posts on the major tech sites. Not that tech sites care about Latinos needing their own social network that speaks to them in their own language.
Will there be news about this outside of the Latino community? Probably not. The headliner for the event is Tego Calderon, and it’s not like he’s Radiohead or something. Regardless, it’s going to be major — the event itself, and I’m quite certain that it will be major to the community that it’s intended for as well.
Now back to that jab at CCI. If MySpace decides it wants to do ethnic sites, shouldn’t it just purchase CCI and get a crack at that ginormous database? (Unfortunately MySpace and its parent News Corp. were not rumored to purchase CCI in our previous post about the company’s impending sale.) But wouldn’t it make sense? Maybe not. On its own, MySpace may already be home to more Latinos. Consider what dana boyd wrote in her paper “Viewing American class divisions through Facebook and MySpace“:
MySpace is still home for Latino/Hispanic teens, immigrant teens, “burnouts,” “alternative kids,” “art fags,” punks, emos, goths, gangstas, queer kids, and other kids who didn’t play into the dominant high school popularity paradigm. These are kids whose parents didn’t go to college, who are expected to get a job when they finish high school. These are the teens who plan to go into the military immediately after schools. Teens who are really into music or in a band are also on MySpace. MySpace has most of the kids who are socially ostracized at school because they are geeks, freaks, or queers.
Maybe there’s something to this business move. Aren’t we seeing more and more examples of American media companies wanting to be all places as all things to all people? Maybe Google should have made a Brazil (Portuguese-laguage only) Orkut and it would have been more than just a side project. Who’s to say? Should we be applauding that Latinos are getting their own-language social network or should we look at this as good old exploitation masked as capitalism? It really doesn’t matter what the answers to those questions are, or what my opinion of the situation is. At the end of the day…
- The site will launch.
- People will visit.
- And the Hispanic ad dollars will pump in.