MySpace, owned by
, Thursday introduced a new new suite of products that allows users to buy song downloads, listen to free streaming audio, and to make playlists, in a joint venture with major record labels.
MySpace said the new products mark the first phase in an "iterative global product rollout which will ultimately include a vast catalogue of premium and promotional content, a wide selection of new user-to-user sharing tools, digital e-commerce opportunities for artists, and ultimately sales of merchandise and concert tickets."
reports the MySpace Music site is the music industry's largest attempt to date to generate advertising revenue in exchange for free online music.
Warner Music Group
Universal Music Group
and Sony BMG Music Entertainment, a joint venture of
, have licensed their catalogs to MySpace and are equity partners in the venture.
MySpace Music also incorporates the music catalog from
, a provider of independent digital music.
The labels get a cut of revenue from ads that sit on the page or player,
MySpace is still looking for a chief executive to run the music venture. The company also has been recently looking to raise about $100 million to $200 million in equity financing for the music operation, the
Wall Street Journal
reports, citing people familiar with the matter.
The first four integrated sponsors to advertise on MySpace Music are
, MySpace said.