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Last Updated: Tuesday, 24 January 2006, 10:59 GMT
MySpace looks to UK music scene
By Rowan Bridge
BBC Radio Five Live reporter in Las Vegas

Rupert Murdoch, head of News Corporation
Buying MySpace is part of Murdoch's online strategy
A UK version of the social networking site MySpace.com is to be launched "within the next 30 days".

The announcement was made by Fox Interactive Media president Ross Levinson at a meeting of the National Association of Television Programme Executives in Las Vegas.

The site allows users to share video and photos, write blogs and network with other users.

Despite only being two years old, it has 50 million registered users.

Some 32 million of these are actively using the site.

Mr Levinson described its success as "not something you can compare to anything in the history of the internet".

Music scene

Intermix Media which owned MySpace was bought in July last year by News Corporation, the parent company of Fox, for $580m (332.85m) as part of its strategy to increase its presence online.

Around a million of its current users are based in the UK.

In an interview with the BBC News website, Mr Levinson said the first priority of the new site would be the UK music scene.

"Clearly the first place to go is music, so we will tap into the music scene," he said.

"We're already working in the US with CD:UK which is coming over to the US, to be called CD:USA, and we're going to integrate bands from MySpace into that programme.

"We hope when we go back to the UK to tap into how successful that show is. Hopefully they'll want to market through MySpace and we'll tap into the local events scene, parties, clubs, artists, film makers, television producers, so I think it's going to grow pretty rapidly."

Mr Levinson said News Corporation would be using the other properties it owns in the UK such as The Sun and The Times newspapers and Sky Television to promote the UK version of MySpace.

He said the site was particularly attractive to advertisers because its users are overwhelmingly aged between 16 and 34 years old, an age bracket companies are keen to target.

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