Facebook Crushing MySpace in Traffic

Advertising? Not So Much

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Want to know which is becoming the world's default social network? Hint: It's not MySpace. ComScore data is out and on a global basis Facebook is pulling away.

Facebook and MySpace were the same size in terms of unique users in June, but since then Facebook has exploded, growing at more than 10% a month while MySpace has remained stagnant. As of November, Facebook had more than 200 million unique users, about twice the size of MySpace's 100 million. TechCrunch charted the last 12 months, and for MySpace it's not a pretty picture.

This is due largely to users overseas, where Facebook is growing fast. In the U.S., MySpace is still the bigger social network, but not by much and probably not for long. The difference, as MySpace execs point out, is that the News Corp-owned social network sells quite a bit of advertising, and Facebook, well, not so much.

In a statement, MySpace said: "We are laser focused on building a sustainable global business which we measure by profits and revenue -- not just eyeballs. In a tough economic climate, our international revenue is up 30% year over year and we continue to focus on those markets with the strong monetization opportunities.

"Additionally, MySpace continues to dominate the U.S. market -- where the bulk of online advertising revenues reside -- both in terms of monetization and user engagement with more than 76 million unique users and a 40% spike in engagement year over year."

Unlike MySpace, Facebook has been run to maximize new users, not to maximize revenue. The joke around Facebook is that the private company is run like a nonprofit.

Just how big has Facebook become? According to ComScore, the internet passed a billion global users for the first time. That means one-in-five internet users (22% to be exact) are on Facebook, a figure made more impressive by the fact that much of the growth is occurring in China, where almost no one uses Facebook.

China, by the way, passed the U.S. in internet users last year and now has 179 million unique users, compared with 163 million in the U.S.

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