After being sold, resold, and finally adopted like a skinny, stray puppy by pop superstar, Justin Timberlake (who now owns 50% of the company) Myspace is out to make a comeback. But will it work? Can Timberlake’s star power magically revive this struggling social media platform? Or should we finally put Myspace out of its misery, euthanize its old accounts, and just move on already?
What’s “New” With The New Myspace
The most obvious difference between the old and new Myspace is that the new Myspace has reinvented itself as a niche site. Myspace now aims to attract music and art loving millennials. The vast majority of the multimedia-centric content is centered around music, from articles about the artists themselves, to the ability to stream full albums and “connect” with your favorite singers. Although Myspace is geared toward music and art fans, a few big name brands are still hanging in there with active accounts like Coca-Cola, and Instant Checkmate. The site is now a hub for creative, multimedia content, which some savvy brands are taking full advantage of.
Is Myspace Going After PC Users?
If you test drive the new Myspace, it’s hard not to notice that the new interface borrows heavily from the Windows 8 layout. Its horizontal scroll is probably the most obvious parallel, but that’s not the only similarity. The new Myspace features the same huge, modular buttons seen on Windows 8. To search for something, you just start typing and you’re instantly taken to a new search screen that takes up your entire monitor, which displays your query in about size 200 font.
Like Window 8, the new Myspace has a lot of bells and whistles that at a glance seem to look pretty legit and impressive. Unfortunately this initial good impression was short lived for me. Once I actually had to start interacting with the site itself, I found the user interface to be counter-intuitive, clunky, and confusing. Although Mashable blogger Pete Pachal, gave the new Myspace an overwhelmingly positive review, even he had to concede to the fact that it just wasn’t very user friendly. He writes, “If the new Myspace has a problem, it’s a learning curve that’s steeper than it needs to be. When you log on for the first time, the site encourages you to make connections with other users, but it’s not immediately clear how to do that.”
The only reason I knew how to search by just beginning to randomly start typing, is because I read about it on a different review site. Otherwise, I would have probably never figured that out on my own (because most users are trained to expect a nice, clean, inviting search engine to enter their queries). Once I knew I could search that way, it was cool, but there was nothing on the homepage to let users know that had this option. If you’re going to have nifty features on your site, it would behoove you to clearly offer them to users so they could actually. . . use them.
The reviews of the new Myspace are still pretty mixed. Some are calling it the biggest brand comeback of 2013, others are simply writing the redesign off as a last ditch attempt to remain relevant. As for me, I think I’ll just stick to the old fashioned method of YouTubing songs I feel like listening to and leave the new Myspace to the millennials.
Danika Rogers is a pop culture blogger and social media connoisseur from Buffale, New York. She writes about celebrities, digital trends, and gives her serious-but-sometimes-snarky opinions on pretty much anything and everything.