As the grand Daddy of online social networks and vendor of the largest catalog of online music content, Myspace music remains the go-to spot for online music discovery and necessary advertising platform for all bands today. With many new start-ups competing for market share, myspace is constantly under fire by these new emerging company's with something to prove. Funny thing about myspace is, even though there are many new and seasoned competitors out there, that in many ways offer superior service's, myspace knows that they hold some what of a obscured monopoly on the music social networking scene. The reason this monopoly exist is due to the basic fact that they were the first real serious music social network to gain and maintain credibility to represent musicians and their image. In many ways actually creating an image for many of the faceless emerging bands out there with no means of promoting themselves. Another reason this quasi monopoly exist is due to the sheer volume in numbers of the user base that they hold. This means that since myspace has such a large user base and is already the most well know go-to spot for free on-line streaming music, not having a band profile with myspace would be a very poor marketing move for the promotion of your brand. So even if you don't like the site and how it operates, it is wise to at least have the minimal contact, band, and music information available for the many potential new fans that could find you.
At the start, myspace was just another new online social network getting its feet wet in the new waters that were emerging all around it. It was the unpredicted establishment and growth of users promoting their music in their profiles that sparked the whole online music social network revolution. Some would say it all started with myspace and others would say that it really started with last.fm. Seeing the immediate popularity and potential behind such an influx, focus and embrace of musicians became very apparent. Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation bought myspace in 2005 for $580 million and shortly after that created a UK version to tap into the music scene there. Over time this was accomplished. As well, after the purchase, they launched their own record label, Myspace records, to discover new talent.
As with most popular things, growth was inevitable and ensuing a long litigation between myspace and universal music group for copyright infringement, Myspace Music was created. This is a separate company all together that is a joint music venture, with equity stakes from major record labels, that allows users to stream music on demand, create music playlists, and add music widgets to their profiles. With the new company came a new face for the myspace music world. A huge overhaul was done to the platform and face of the site. Many new tools were added for artists as well as users. This face lift came just in the nick of time though. Imeem, the fastest rising competitor to myspace, had just finished the revamping of their music social network. And with facebook gaining an obvious lead in popularity and user registration, as well as unique visits, myspace had no time to linger. Taking a firm stance back into the progressive music social network arena, it seemed that they had saved their credibility as a lasting player in the online music business.
Although myspace music continues to be the most dominant music web site today, many still remain unhappy about its services, alliances ,and marketing methods. Focusing on a few major black eyes, starting with the most obvious. Ads! Ads! Ads! We all know that the monetization platform for most of these music streaming websites is ad-based. The only thing wrong with that is the quality and quantity of ads that are being distributed to you. In the case of myspace, you are bombarded with a large arsenal of highly un-targeted adds that either have no relevance to you or are down right offensive. And there is no way around it. One would think that a food conscious band is not to happy about the huge banner add above his band profile promoting McDonald's new super sized whatever. As for the user experience, the lack of a seamless music player is quite inconvenient for all users and seems to suggest that myspace is more concerned with controlling your music and user experience rather than providing their users with an open and user friendly listening and operating ability. Another major black eye for myspace music is that all their music alliances side with the major record labels Sony BMG, Universal Music Group, and Warner Music Group. Through out their life span, myspace has show little love for independent music labels and continues to mostly embrace mainstream popular music. As said in the start of the article, myspace remains the grand daddy of music social networks due to its sheer enormity. This does not mean that there is not room for others to take on market share. Others that have challenged myspace's crown have been PureVolume, Imeem, Last.fm, and recent new comer Spotify . All have their own great attributes and blaring holes. It will be most interesting to see who will last this new digital music revolution.
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