(previously published on www.thecelebritycafe.com on March 3, 2008)
MySpace plans free ad-supported music streams, MP3 downloads and music subscriptions.
According to Reuters, the social networking giant, MySpace, has a plan for music and MP3’s to be shared and sold online through the site. Such offerings would bring the site into direct competition with everything from iTunes to subscription services such as Rhapsody, and, of course, other social networking sites.
This news comes as rival social networking sites, ranging from Facebook to Last.fm and imeem.com, launch their own attempts into the online music business – and increase their audience numbers in the process.
MySpace’s parent company News Corp. hopes to open a music site with the major record labels as partners, says Reuters. In such a deal, the label would get a cut of the advertising revenue generated from the music pages. The goal is for users to create profiles, listen to music, find other users with the same musical tastes, and even buying and downloading songs.
Whether all this competition actually means something or will be significant is unknown. While online music business really might be an alternative to piracy, only 14 percent of Internet users report getting music through social networking sites, said the NPD group, a research group cited by Reuters.
Still, as Martin Stiksel, the co-founder of Last.fm says, “MySpace is always a force to be reckoned with” – despite joining the movement a little late.