MySpace My Music 2.0: Dead on Arrival

The folks at MySpace Music are extremely excited to announce the Beta launch of My Music 2.0 – a place where users can build and manage social playlists using world’s most comprehensive online music catalog, or so it says. Apparently in all their excitement, the team behind MySpace Music actually forgot to launch the service, or was forced to take it down temporarily.

The post about the launch of the new service has been posted on MySpace blog by Roberto Fisher, Vice President of MySpace Music. If only Fisher would have clicked on the URL of the service that he has linked to, no less than four times, in his post he would have saved himself and his team from such utter disgrace.

Over the years we have seen the “Beta” label being abused by services for a number of reasons. So much so that, in recent years I have failed to see a product/service being launched without the beta label. Gmail became the prime example of the beta culture. The popular email service from Google remained in beta for a number of years, although it had amassed millions of users. It was always convenient for Google to hide behind the protection offered by the service being in “Beta”, whenever there was a service outage.

We have seen services that had clumsy user interfaces, or features that were absent or not working as specified upon launch. However, the feat of launching a service that is absolutely dead on arrival, is unique to MySpace alone.

When I first encountered the error message, displayed in German, I thought that the service might have not been launched in Germany. However, after confirming with Social Times colleagues in US, I realized that its a global thing.

The blog post from Roberto Fisher promises the service to be user friendly with UI features that include:

  • Sort-able song grids with a slicker drag and drop
  • Subtle ‘reveals’ which display the information and features as you need them
  • In-place edits and settings
  • Vertical scrolling improvements
  • Playback in-page

The service is also promised to support “social discovery”, whereby latest song related activities are displayed to the users. This feature allows users to easily find the most recent music that their friends and favorite artists are broadcasting. But what’s the point in detailing all these features when the users can’t access them?