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"It really represents a natural evolutionary step in where the Internet is going and how we look to enable this innovation of creating a more social Internet.”
——COO Ami Kapur
MYSPACE GOES WIDE
Company Wants Users to Start Using Site as a Hub of Online Activity
MySpace unveiled a feature Monday to help wed the site with the wider Web, just days after a similar move by Facebook, the Wall Street Journal reported this morning. Both initiatives seek to boost growth by connecting social networking with a broad base of sites, and both could have significant implications for artists and fans.

Under MySpace Open Platform, partner sites will let MySpace users log on with their MySpace accounts, connect with their MySpace friends, share information they store on MySpace and publish information from these sites on their MySpace pages.

As an example, staff writer Emily Steel explained that a MySpace user who visits a shopping site could log in with his MySpace I.D., see what items on the site his friends had bought and publish his holiday wish list to his MySpace page.

The system, announced during Le Web 08 Conference in Paris, is an expansion of tools announced earlier this year. MySpace also is expanding its list of partners to include Google and Vodafone Group.

Said MySpace COO Amit Kapur: "It really represents a natural evolutionary step in where the Internet is going and how we look to enable this innovation of creating a more social Internet.”

MySpace wants its members to start using the site as a central hub to manage their online identities with an ever wider array of information, Steel further explained. The company hopes the initiative will boost user loyalty, step up traffic and drive more ad dollars to the site.

MySpace also has been testing new technologies that let marketers target their ads according to the information people reveal about themselves in their profiles.

MySpace is experimenting with ways that it can extend this ad-targeting data elsewhere on the Web through MySpaceID.

In addition, the company is looking at ways to diversify its revenue stream by using MySpaceID tools as a payment-processing system and to make money by selling virtual goods, Kapur said.

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