Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

Demand Media Beats the Street in Q1 Earnings and Promises to Clean Up Its Content Act

Demand Media handily beat Wall Street expectations in its first quarter results today, released after the market closed.

The company reported revenue of $79.5 million and six cents a share in adjusted net income.

Investors were expecting the company to report about $69.6 million in revenue for the three months, with four cents a share in adjusted profits.

On a GAAP basis, the net loss per share was 13 cents compared to 94 cents a year ago.

The decent results could boost Demand’s stock, which has been hit hard since Google launched “Panda,” an overhaul of its search algorithm to improve results and remove poor quality content.

In a conference call at 2 pm PT today, which BoomTown will be liveblogging, most will be paying more mind to what the online content company’s top execs–especially CEO Richard Rosenblatt–have to say about the impact of the updates from Google to Demand’s various Web offerings.

As a first strike, some of Demand’s execs briefed the media earlier today on efforts to improve the quality of its content–you can read the official press releases here on that and also here.

In them, Demand said it will remove some online posts that were substandard and created under a now-suspended writers’ compensation system. It said it is also improving reader feedback tools and adding more substantive stories to its sites.

Those are all good ideas, since Google’s tweaks have been chewing away at a range of Web sites–such as those owned by Demand–which rely heavily on search engine optimization to bring in huge traffic.

One big hit for Demand, due to Panda, has been to its flagship eHow site.

All the mishegas has hurt the Santa Monica, Calif., company’s stock. It’s down just over 30 percent since Demand’s IPO in late January, as bearish investors fret over the implications of Panda.

Still, in its report, Demand said its content and media revenue was up 72 percent to $51.9 million, compared to $30.2 million last year.

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There’s a lot of attention and PR around Marissa, but their product lineup just kind of blows.

— Om Malik on Bloomberg TV, talking about Yahoo, the September issue of Vogue Magazine, and our overdependence on Google