December 06, 2012, 2:22 PM —
If you’re in the business of making fun of technology companies, which I somehow fell into years ago and seem unable to escape, there has been no greater gift than MySpace.
Sure, AOL is like a clown car with an infinite number of bozos pouring out of the trunk. Yahoo’s ups and downs have always been good for large helpings of schadenfreude (excellent when served with dumplings and a crisp Riesling). Microsoft has often been quite ludicrous over the years.
But MySpace has always been a motherload of geek comedy gold, from its well-earned reputation as a home for online predators, white trash teens, and strippers, to its painfully bad designs (and redesigns, and re-redesigns). The whole “Our logo is no longer MySpace, it’s My_____” strategy was Onionesque in its absurdity, and watching Facebook totally kick it in the assets has been a guilty pleasure.
The fact that Rupert Murdoch et al bought it for $580 million and then dumped it five years later for $35 million still makes me chuckle. That the site was to be resurrected by a group headed by Justin Timberlake was just icing on the cake.
Today, though, I got invited to play with a preview of the new Timberlake-scented MySpace. And I am embarrassed to admit I kind of like it.
Granted, this is not your slutty teenage daughter’s MySpace. This new MySpace is really aimed at Hollywood hipsters and wannabe’s. The first clue? After I’ve signed in (using my old MySpace account, Facebook, or Twitter ID) it asks me what professions I identify with most:
Note that Exotic Dancer is not one of the options.