In its golden years, the social media platform, MySpace, resembled something very special in the idea of media convergence. It briefly became a place where there was a mix of listening to music and speaking to your friends. Personalization of users profiles went hand in hand with popular tracks at the time and the website thus developed into a hot spot for music, where people could listen with their friends. Myspace essentially stood for the idea of “music made social”. That was a very long time ago, and the idea of a that conjunction has since faded away.
However, it appears that “music made social” will appear once more. And this time it might be here to stay.
A clear example of a mix between social media and music outlets would be the story of how Twitter and SoundCloud became an extremely helpful medium for the music industry in Nigeria. Artists can release their music and become popular and heard incredibly easier then older methods, which were not as proficient. This is not an example of social media platforms working on the integration with music outlets, but rather what this duo is capable of.
So what is the integration looking like? It’s alive and well, considering every social media platform is working towards it. Snapchat is a leading example, as the popular app has maintained a generally positive relationship with artists. Such an example would be Ed Sheeran, who’s song was available for listening with the app’s AR lens. Considering the app’s massive user base, the company is catching on to the fact that positive relations with artists and labels can not only bring in more fans but also provide a solid and exclusive place for listeners.
Facebook is another figure which exemplifies a strong interest in providing music to its massive user base. The company has taken measures to developing methods to releasing music content, such as hiring music licencing executives or seeking ways to managing such content provided it can actively release it. Despite Zuckerberg reiterates his emphasis on videos rather than audio streaming alone, this is a significant aspect showing what the platform is capable of. There is also a possibility of Facebook striking a partnership with the popular YouTube partner Vevo, as the music company’s partnership with YouTube is set to expire later this year. It is also worth mentioning Facebook live’s capabilities, such as the current ACLU “telethon” (which will be discussed in a later post) that has featured live artists.
The idea to grasp from this is that developments are currently happening that exemplify the early model of MySpace, blending social media platforms with music, not only assisting in releasing and streaming music easier and faster, but also keeping the music industry in accordance to where the listeners are. But also with this reminiscent model comes the crafting of the unique and incredible relationship between artists and fans, something that has become it’s own entity with the advent of music and social media integration.