Troubled MySpace Hit By Privacy Lawsuit

Talk about knocking something while it is down.  MySpace, the once pioneering social network site turned faltering ‘social entertainment’ destination, now finds itself embroiled in a lawsuit, accused of releasing users’ information without their consent.

Bloomberg reports the News Corp.-owned site stands accused in the lawsuit of giving to aggregators data that connects MySpace users’ names with their Internet browsing histories.

“Myspace knowingly serves as and profits handsomely from being a conduit through which details of the most intimate aspects of its members’ lives, as reflected in their Internet browsing history and otherwise, are transmitted to data aggregators, who package the information into profiles and sell it like any other commodity to advertisers,” the complaint says.

The activity alleged in the suit obviously does not align with the site’s privacy policy which clearly states to users the network will inform them “who is collecting the information, how and why the information is being collected and the types of uses Myspace will make of the information.”

The suit, according to Bloomberg, seeks class-action, or group, status and unspecified damages.

News Corp. is reportedly in talks to give control of Myspace to music website Vevo.com.

That transfer would be in line with the site’s transition last October from social networking to what it coined “social entertainment.”

No longer popular with social network users, the once dominant site took itself out of competition with the likes of Facebook and Twitter and rebranded itself with a new logo and Web design as a “social entertainment destination for Gen Y.”

Bloomberg reports Myspace’s worldwide traffic shrank after the much-heralded redesign 29 percent to 62.6 million visitors in February from 88 million in October 2010.

Left unknown and unsaid, NewsCorp has yet to comment on the suit, is whether those numbers and the lawsuit will affect the pending transfer to Vevo.com.

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