John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

MySpace: A Place for “Friends”

Well, this casts MySpace’s user-engagement metrics in a whole new light…

The social network today said it has identified and ousted 90,000 sex offenders–40,000 more than it first reported last year when it was subpoenaed by the Connecticut Attorney General’s office as part of an effort to protect minors on social-networking sites. “This shocking revelation–resulting from our subpoena–provides compelling proof that social-networking sites remain rife with sexual predators,” Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal said in a statement. “Nearly 100,000 convicted sex offenders with MySpace profiles powerfully refutes the recent task force report–based on outdated and incomplete data–falsely downplaying the threat of predators on social-networking sites.”

Now, 90,000 individuals is a pittance, considering MySpace had 124.9 million unique visitors in December, according to comScore. But it is unsettling nonetheless since the MySpace profiles removed were those of registered sex offenders dim enough to use their real names. Surely there are many, many more at large using aliases. Ultimately, MySpace has absolutely no idea how many registered sex offenders it’s harboring; nor does it have an effective means of prohibiting those it has identified and ousted from returning.

Consider this: In July 2007, MySpace made a big deal of locating and deleting the profiles of 29,000 registered sex offenders from its site. Not two years later, it’s deleting triple that number.