Television

News Corp launches MySpace in Japan

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MUMBAI: US media conglomerate News Corp has launched a Japanese-language version of its social networking site (SNS) MySpace. This marks MySpace's first Asian entry.

Media reports state that News Corp has formed a 50:50 JV with Softbank to operate the site. The venture will initially offer services for personal computers. Later, people will be able to use mobile phones to post photos, write Web logs and download music.

Partial services are available on a trial basis at jp.myspace.com.

Reports add that while it is hard to predict how things will unfold , other attempts by foreign SNS' to break into the Japanese market have not fared well. Softbank is a broadband services provider in Japan and earlier this year paid $15.6 billion to acquire Vodaphone's Japanese mobile phone service.

Existing social networking sites in Japan - including Softbank subsidiary Yahoo Japan - have about 10 million users. Softbank has a 41 per cent stake in Yahoo Japan.

Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son was quoted in reports saying that his company would guide the new venture so that it met the requirements of Japanese users, while News Corp, which invested in MySpace through its Fox Interactive Media subsidiary, would provide the 'formula' for operating the Web site.

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