There’s quite an interesting discussion started over on MusicThinkTank regarding MySpace. Specifically, Andrew Dubber’s suggesting a mass exodus from the service. It’s a great read, as are the comments.
Here’re my thoughts on that idea. First off, MySpace is a bit like Celine Dion. It’s really cool to hate her, and definitely NOT cool to like her – Tim Westergren (honcho of online music service Pandora) tells a great story about Pandora & Celine Dion in a recent article for the NYT. The bottom line of which is maybe it’s NOT cool to like Celine but that shouldn’t make you hate or ignore her, if it’s possible that her music will serve it’s purpose.
It might also be a mistake to abandon MySpace if you’ve NO IDEA who or how many people actually ONLY KNOW YOUR MUSIC THROUGH MYSPACE. You could be cutting off hundreds of paying customers because you hate Celine Dion, so to speak. 🙂 Not good and certainly worth considering before you pull the plug.
Much of the MTT post rings true, that MySpace is completely unfit for purpose, that it’s drastically underutilizing the resources it has.
But at the same time, and a similar point is made by Rich Dale in the comments, “to myspace” someone is an understandable action, just as understandable as “to google” something.
And it’s that simplicity that makes me think abandoning MySpace would be a terrible idea. In fact, it’d contrivene one of Andrew’s “20 Things You Must Know About Music Online” – Rule 9 “Don’t make me search for something, show me”. The lack of a barrier to entry that MySpace has created is it’s primary asset. And quite frankly, I’m happy if that’s all it’s used for.
If you’ve “quit myspace” recently, why? What combination of tools work best for you to build your fanbase and is MySpace part of that?
Update: A fantastic middle ground has also been presented in the comments! Replace your MySpace player with any widget from another music service (including Bandcamp). Hurrah for compromise! – http://su.pr/6jc2y6