MySpace Platform – too little too late?

Not to be outdone, MySpace has been increasing its visibility as a player in the application playground, catapulted recently by Facebook.  Today at Graphing Social Patterns, a mySpace rep attempted, in my opinion unsuccessfully, to build interest in the MySpace developer platform.

Amit Kapur discussed how the internet was evolving, becoming much more personable, and highly targeted.  Widgets and mobile make it more portable and social networks enable collaboration.  Ok, fair enough.

Amit then went on to discuss MySpaces core platform, consisting of two primary pillars:

 – Enablement, 99% user generated content
– Connectivity engine & the ability to discover new people

The mySpace platofrm was originally launched Feb 5th, (2008) , with the intent to empower developers, giving them a voice into its creation and evolution.  They also opted for an open-standards implementation, scraping their own proprietary system (which was under development) for Google’s OpenSocial framwork. Amit adds that privacy and safety are the driving forces at this early stage of developmet.

There are five (5) surfaces within MySpace, the directory, app profile, canvas page, embeded profiles & embeded home pages.  APIs are available to access most public profile data, such as extracting a users friends list.  Amit then went on to discuss, at somewhat length monetization, entirely in the context of advertising.  Amit explained how traditional models no longer work and they offer a “laser-targeted” tool called Hypter-targeting that leverages the self-expression metadata resident in MySpace user pages, which will help advertisers target very distinct user segments. 

At the end, Amit left time for questions, whereas someone asked “this is all great for MySpace and advertising, but how does this engage developers to build apps for mySpace?” – my thoughts exactly. 🙂

Its clear to me, Myspace’s platform is not even half-baked, and rather apparent the entire strategy has been an after-thought of Facebook’s success.  Its rather funny to me, an organization their size is trying to play catchup with a much smaller competitor.  While you certainly can’t help but respect their membership base, I am under the impression all the cool kids have left long ago..

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