MySpace is a music-focused social network. Users can add friends to their contact lists and send private messages or post messages on one another’s profiles directly (much like a Facebook wall). The user’s profile includes an image and as much or as little personal information as the user cares to add. Users can catch up with friends, meet new people and explore a variety of mainstream musical talent. Each user is also given a blog feature that they can use, which is accessible through their profile. Additional photos can be added to profile albums. Users can put together a play list of their favorite music to share with others as well. The site has incorporated the ability to earn and display badges for completing various activities within the online community.
MySpace has weathered through a long, turbulent history since it was founded by Tom Anderson, Chris DeWolfe and Brad Greenspan in August of 2003. Early in its career, MySpace enjoyed rapid growth and enormous popularity as one of the top social networking websites. The site surpassed the one million mark in February of 2004 and counted approximately 20 million users by the following year. The network’s popularity began to diminish after a 2006 lawsuit was filed by Universal Music Group for copyright infringement. The site underwent a significant renovation in 2008, hoping to improve its interface and possibly recover some of its previous glory. MySpace was acquired by Specific Media for $35 million in June of 2011.
MySpace offers many of the same features that other popular social networks provide. The main defining factor is the website’s focus on music rather than general networking. Competitors like Facebook tend to cater to a general crowd with mixed interests. MySpace has tapped into those who have a fondness for music, especially pop and other mainstream genres. The website has added play lists as well as music-related content to its offerings.
New users are greeted by a list of images to go with various musicians, photos and articles posted on MySpace. The site primarily favors content that is “hot” at the moment, so users who enjoy less popular or older musicians and genres may not find anything of interest. The user interface is easy to understand, and improved slightly after the site’s renovation. At the time, many users pointed to MySpace’s chaotic interface as a detriment rather than an asset. The current design maintains a black color scheme that relies primarily on photos to add character and style.
A new user can join the MySpace community by clicking the yellow “Sign Up” button in the upper, left hand corner of the homepage. The registration form on the next page asks for a first and last name, email address, password, date of birth and gender. The user is also asked for an account type (personal, musician, comedian or filmmaker). The next step asks the user to update their profile information with personal details and an optional photo. The last step invites the user to add people and interests before accessing their profile.
MySpace is available to all users for nothing. There are no subscription fees and the user doesn’t have to pay to access content or keep their profile active. This is definitely a positive. Charging a fee for access would only further hurt MySpace’s popularity and the size of its community. Although many users still frequent the site, it does not live up to the standards set by many of its competitors.
MySpace is considered as a preferred social networking destination for people who like to socialize with their friends and families online. So this site can be recommended to any one who is in search of reliable social networking platform that equips him/her with all the necessary features and technologies used worldwide.