Myspace – A History & A Future (includes leaked internal slides)

Now i’ll admit from the start that I have a guilty love of Myspace. It was the first social network that I regularly used and it brings back memories of excitedly uploading the latest recordings from my band to their music player to share with the world. After all, back in 2006 bands were filled with a fresh hope! No longer did they have to send out crate loads of demo CD’s to unresponsive record labels, with this new thing called myspace all you had to do was send a message to whichever label you wanted, with a link to your Myspace page and BAM… you’d *probably* get signed there and then. It worked for the Arctic Monkeys and Calvin Harris didn’t it, with the internet suddenly touted as the “home of a new music revolution”

It wasn’t just bands, people – REAL PEOPLE – were using it too. You could suddenly become friends with all of your, well, friends and ‘browse’ the network for like minded (helped if they had a cute photo) people to make new friends.

Then it all went wrong. This happy place for friends became a spam riddled, ad cluttered, clunky heap of a waste of server space. Everyone left for pastures new AKA Facebook leaving the ruinous remains of Myspace to spambot rule.

In 2004-5 Myspace was a place where the ‘kids’ could go hang out with their new friend Tom, away from the eyes of their parents as something that they could claim as their own. Of course any such organisation holding as much personal data as Myspace suddenly did will catch the eyes of ‘the man’. That man was Rupert Murdoch and his News Corp who purchased it for £332 million.

Myspace Timeline

Myspace reached its user peak in 2008 before the behemoth that is Facebook overtook it. So began the fall of a giant with Jack (Mark Zuckerberg) chopping the beanstalk hardest until in 2011 Specific Media picked up the lifeless form that was Myspace, launching a plan to recusitate it.

And here is that plan, apparently leaked from a deck for internal use only (I don’t buy that).

In summary:

  • Specific Media hope to position Myspace as “the  number one online community music destination and to “feed the energy of youth culture everywhere”. They name their ‘bullseye’ taget audience as male and females, 21 years old. This seems something of a contradiction to me? A 21 year old is on the verge of not really being considered a youth…surely it would be better to target the 14+ age group?
  • They intend to take revenue from “ad-supported music video and audio streaming” a la Spotify.
  • They admit that they failed to build a well functioning social product.
  • They blame the decline in users on a combination of Facebook and “rumours of impending Myspace sale” in 2010.
  • They think Justin Timberlake’s involvement/investment will give them credibility…

Here’s the original deck:

You can read more on AllThingsD where I first read about it


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