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MySpace Music

The Media Response: MySpace Music Still Missing Indie Labels


By: Spacelab Research Staff

The dust has cleared for the big release of MySpace Music, leaving many wondering what the next steps are for MySpace. They've included the big labels EMI, Universal Music, Sony BMG and Warner Music; but they are still M.I.A. on deals with most of the independent labels and a package for unsigned bands. This is leaving a lot of people wondering -- will they will eventually offer a deal or hang the independents out to dry?


To be fair, MySpace Music already has deal with the Orchard, but no deal with Merlin, a group that represents independent labels like Beggars Group, Rough Trade, Domino, and Warp Records. At this point it's tough to tell if the labels have been completely excluded, or haven't been able to reach a mutual agreement with MySpace. Right now, it looks like a deal is on the table but unfinished ... so let the PR campaigns begin! Everybody seems to be out petitioning for public opinion.


"It is both disappointing and astonishing that MySpace, built on the music of independent artists and labels, should, now it has the majors as partners, choose to launch without those that have been at its heart, and whilst treating independents as second class-citizens," said Martin Mills, chairman of Beggars Group when speaking with The Guardian.


In the meantime, the reactions on the web are in, and here's what people are saying:

"Maybe MySpace Music will prove a great marketing tool for the four record labels who've signed up and maybe it will make MySpace a more "sticky" place as the social network competes with Facebook. But will it really convince young music fans that it's worth paying for tracks that they can get elsewhere for nothing? Don't hold your breath."

Rory Cellan-Jones / dot.life / BBC News


"MySpace has done a deal with one independent music distributor - The Orchard - and said it had "offered a relationship with Merlin that provides equal opportunities to Merlin's labels and artists that we have provided to all labels and artists". But talks between the two sides have, so far, proved fruitless."

Matthew Garrahan / FinancialTimes


"A bit slow. Cluttered. Somewhat confusing. Lack of focus. Really ugly McDonald's ad. Has a lot of potential."

Glenn / Coolfer


"But if you're looking at MySpace Music as the Web's best destination site for music -- which is the way MySpace execs have been describing the project both internally and externally -- it falls flat. We've been trying to think of the best way to describe our disappointment, but it's been embarassingly hard for us to articulate."

Peter Kafka / Silicon Alley Insider



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