Ahh, MySpace. The profile I have now is actually my second. I created a personal profile a few years ago because I wanted to try and connect with old friends, network with new ones, blah blah blah. After about two months I realized that I was spending WAY too much time on the site, finding myself looking at the friend of a friend of an aquaintance. So, without warning (I’m very spontaneous that way) I deleted the profile and was free.
Then Fox ponied up a chunk of dough and bought the ‘Space. I suddenly realized that there were thousands of filmmakers on the site, all of them in need of a composer at some point, and here I was, ready for them. So with a huge sigh, I created a business profile that linked back to my website in the hopes that potential collaborators would find the MySpace page and then jump over to my real site. What happened next was like those National Geographic specials where you see the herd of deer eating peacefully, and then the camera pans over to the lion waiting quietly in the tall grass. My MySpace profile was getting more hits than my site, and I was meeting people left and right. I started blogging and posting bulletins, and spent hours finding new filmmakers to add to my quickly bloating friendslist. MySpace became my homepage, and I checked for updates hourly. When I finished a score, or won an award, it was the first place I updated and blogged and announced. I was a deer, and MySpace was the hungry lion, devouring all my marketing time and energy.
About a month ago, after a year, I achieved burnout. While MySpace has allowed me to connect with many creative people, some of which have become good friends and paid work, there was a large quantity of flakiness and unprofessionalism that permeated the site as well. There are filmmakers on there that are promoting their films, indie and studio alike, and have thousands and thousands of “friends.” They’re there to bring fans into the theaters, and it’s a wonderful place to market for next to nothing. They’re not looking for a composer, and with 10,000 friends they clearly don’t have time to read blogs or bulletins. Also, I don’t like the idea that, at any time, MySpace can claim my profile violates some part of their constitution (i.e. rules) and, without warning, delete it. No advance notice, no time to save all my info, just click and it’s all gone.
My first reaction, my impulse reaction, was to just delete the profile myself, but I’ve made some connections with film people that I’d like to keep, and as a free source of advertisement, it won’t hurt to have it up there. Instead I’ve made some big changes. I deleted 90% of my friendslist. I got rid of the blogs, and moved my blogging here. If I get deleted, I lose nothing but time. I turned off all the notifications so that I’m not tempted to check the site more than once a week, I disabled all the comments, and I’m building a new flash music player to add to the page. I’m moving on to some new marketing strategies, and focusing more on television, which has always been the place, ultimately, I’d like to be.
And that’s my rant. I’m still convinced that the next big filmakers are on MySpace somewhere, like a few needles in a field of hay. My goal is to meet that person through other avenues, and make MySpace work for me.