Like a phoenix from the ashes, Myspace is set to rise again… Maybe.
The platform has previewed the visuals for what will essentially be a complete website overhaul in an effort to bring the people back.
It’s not too surprising. When Justin Timberlake purchased the crumbling platform in June 2011, everyone suspected a revamp. The question is, will the audience actually bite?
The site looks to be remaining true to what became its accidental major selling point; giving music artists a place to build their own profiles and share their sounds. The new visual optimisation seeks to build on this, allowing people to share playlists and show people what they have been listening to.
Artists can also promote other artists and even their fans, a feature that is essentially the “top friends” component from the Myspace of old.
The artists were the last one off the boat when the Myspace titanic begun it’s steady descent into the waters of irrelevance years ago. Now that music and musicians have become MySpace’s key selling point, it’s going to need those same artists to return if it is to draw in the masses once again.
User experience is difficult to gauge at this point, although one can only hope it will be improved. Harrowing recollections of loading a Myspace profile, only to have the not-so-sultry sounds of a pop song involuntarily blare through your speaker system, still linger.
It could take off. There is certainly scope to develop something unique for music. Additionally, now that Myspace has firmly identified its target audience, it can take steps to cater to their specific needs. How well it manages to do this, and how effectively it can take steps to compete against platforms like Soundcloud and Spotify, will ultimately determine whether or not the renewed platform actually develops any traction.
Another thing to consider is that Myspace has undergone severe layoffs since the beginning of its decline back in 2009, slowly trimming the organisation’s 1600 person strong workforce to a group of around 200. The question then not only becomes will it get traction, but whether or not it can respond to that traction rapidly enough.
Whilst certainly the largest, it’s certainly not the first attempt Myspace has made at winning back the crowd, and every previous attempt has failed to prevent the snowballing decline in users.
This is a last ditch effort of a Platform that have been falling into obscurity for sometime now, that said, it is a very flashy effort. The preview video shows a platform that has a much better idea of what it wants to be (even if it does look a lot like Pinterest).
Will it pay off? Judgement will be reserved until the beta release.