MTV NEWS ARTICLES

AUTHOR: Gil Kaufman, MTV.com

Surely you didn’t think Justin Timberlake was not going to use the release of his first solo single in six years to help promote the relaunch of Myspace?

Timberlake, a savvy investor as well as dashingly handsome singer/actor, put his Jay-Z-assistedSuit & Tie” front-and-center on Tuesday when Myspace emerged from months of private beta testing. There on the front page was a picture of JT, yes, in a suit and tie, as well as a chance to stream or download the song simply for joining or signing in to Myspace.

After taking an ownership stake in 2011 of the once-dominant social network pioneer that fell on hard times, Timberlake promised that he’d put in the work to make it relevant again.

Wired magazine suggested that by putting Timberlake’s new tune upfront, the site, which has been completely revamped to focus on assisting artists in sharing their music with passionate fans, is sending a clear message about what it is good for: “posting music for free, and trying to upsell it to downloads.”

By making it very easy for any user to repost any song they find from their profile, the redesign is a callback to the original Myspace, which pitched itself as a place for music lovers to discover new bands. And, thanks to partnerships with major and indie record labels, the music sharing experience on the new Myspace is easier than the somewhat clunkier Spotify-fueled method on chief competitor Facebook.

Users can either dig out their old password, or use their Twitter and Facebook data to get on board, at which point they will, well, see JT again and have another chance to listen to or download “Tie.” The Discover tab links to a page of other artists, known and lesser-known, from Little Night Terrors and Parker Ighile, to Eminem, Taylor Swift and Lady Gaga, many of whom have already signed up for verified accounts. With an emphasis on music discovery and a highly visual interface with lots of Instagram-like photos, the site also has a series of streaming radio stations in genres ranging from rap and rock to electronic, pop, country, heavy metal, classical and reggae.

Once you connect with some other users, you can then share playlists in the Mixes section, where everything from music to photos and status updates can be put into everything from a Profile mix (which includes your profile photos and songs) to a Stream Mix (which rolls through your posts on the site). Also, like Facebook chat and Gtalk, Myspace has its own instant messaging feature.

What do you think of the new Myspace? Let us know in comments below!

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