Revenue is growing at the News Corp division which includes social networking site Myspace despite the economic downturn but measuring the value of online friends has let to setbacks in growth.

Executives have released financial information about MySpace and Fox Interactive in piecemeal fashion. MySpace is considered a strategic asset and its value figured in major acquisition talks this year, including an ultimately discarded deal to acquire part of the Yahoo portal last year.

Questions remain about the value in monetizing social relationships online.

It's still difficult to quantify the economic value of a friend in the social networking space, said News Corp COO Peter Chernin in May of 2008.

For the latest quarter, News Corp reported in September that revenue at Fox Interactive Media grew 17 percent.

Fox Interactive Media is seeing revenue growth even in the face of negative macroeconomic conditions around the globe, including weak advertising markets, said Peter Chernin, chief operating officer at News Corp.

Fox Interactive Media faced a setback earlier in 2008, when the unit failed to reach its revenue target. News Corp reported in May of 2008 that the unit fell short of its growth revenue target for fiscal 2008, which ended June 30. The revenue target had been 80 percent growth for 2008, but fell short by about 10 percent.

Fox Interactive had been expected to reach $1 billion in revenue in fiscal 2008 with margins of 20 percent, according to chief executive Rupert Murdoch, who gave those figures in June of 2007. Murdoch said the unit generated $10 million in profit for fiscal 2007 on $550 million in revenue.