Over the last month, I've gotten a few e-mails from individuals representing companies who publish social websites with a musical bent to them. Many times they describe themselves as musical "communities" that allow users to share music they love and find new artists other users recommend.
Personally, I use MySpace occasionally to look for free downloads or sometimes to find pictures or tour schedules, but not as a utility for making "friends." Notice the quotation marks.
Please, don't get me wrong...I don't want to seem critical of those folks who claim to have thousands of friends on MySpace...if that's your thing then stick with it.
I think it was last week when I saw a news article about online addictions. Any connection ya think?
"Employing state-of-the-art Web 2.0 technology, MOG is an online destination where music lovers can quickly and easily show the world what they're listening to, express their musical tastes, and discover people through music and music through people."
Once you sign up for MOG, according to their hype, MOG uploads a list of all the music you have and creates a homepage for you that anyone can visit to check out what you're listening to. You can do the same, presumably finding new bands that people who like the same music as you like. In addition, MOG has some big names (the spotlight now is on Ben Gibbard) that share what THEY listen to (similar to Celebrity Playlists on iTunes) as well as post entries about what's happening in their "more interesting than yours" life. I have to admit, I have no clue what they mean by their "state-of-the-art Web 2.0 technology," but it must be better than the stuff I'm using.
In addition to sharing what you are listening to, you can create a profile (similar to MySpace) where you can paint vivid, and possibly true, descriptions of yourself and your varied experiences from around the globe (or around the mall, depending on how honest you are) as well as post blog-like entries.
"PhilaFunk Records is a social network that allows all musicians to distribute their music online and keep 80 percent of each sale that they make. Everyone in the Philafunk community is helping support independent musicians, and everyone can make new friends and discover new music by joining the community."
Unlike MOG.com, you can actually buy music on this site. I'm not sure that you will recognize any of the musicians, unless perhaps they are local to you and you've seen them at the bar on the corner. In addition to being able to purchase music, you can create a profile (not quite as detailed as MOG) as well a new identity for yourself. If MOG is using "state-of-the-art Web 2.0 technology," PhilaFunk must have "state-of-the-art in the 90's .5 technology", and it shows. This site is much simpler, with more focus on the music that you can actually buy. To go along with this, you'll see banner ads for things like "Bid4Me Dating Auctions."
Before you think that I'm totally down on the PhilaFunk folks...in their defense, they do supposedly give the bands who sell music on the site .80 cents out of every dollar browsers spend on their music.
I'm not even going to start on MySpace...instead, here are some songs:
Demetri Martin - I Got 9000 Friends : Demetri Martin's MySpace site
Biz Markie - Just A Friend : Tribute to D12
Je Suis France - Thank You For Being A Friend : Tittania
Lily Allen - Friend Of Mine : Alright, Still
The Rembrandts - I'll Be There For You (Theme From Friends) : L.P.
Whodini - Friends : Escape