It didn’t take a genius to realize that MySpace — one of the “new” internet’s biggest (and most unlikely) success stories — needed to address the issue of language sooner or later. To better serve the presumably millions of Spanish-speaking users already on MySpace and to attract even more (cha-ching!), the company has made the very smart decision to launch MySpace en Español:
“We’re moving rapidly to build communities that reflect and respect the lifestyles of our diverse members,” Travis Katz, senior vice president and general manager of MySpace International, said in a statement. “MySpace en Español opens the community even wider, giving our Hispanic members the choice to share their experiences, connect with family members and plan their social lives in either Spanish or English.”
What’s interesting to me about this is that MySpace has chosen, according to this article, to target the U.S. Latino population rather than the larger Spanish-speaking population in general with a Spanish site. And while they say that they give U.S. Latinos the option to “plan their social lives in either English or Spanish” (a good thing), it’s called MySpace en Español (with URL latino.myspace.com). I don’t get it. Shouldn’t it be MySpace Latino? While I continue to lament the lack of Spanish language content relevant to U.S. Latinos, one cannot assume that all Latinos here speak Spanish. Nope. Not all 42 million. Nyet. And to put it bluntly, one would have to be an idiot to think such a thing.
And while the San Jose Mercury News reports that only the IM service will be in Spanish, a look at the site shows that the entire interface actually en español.
I must be missing something. I haven’t tried out the service but will soon, and will report back with (hopefully) a good rationale for all of this.
The Mercury News also reports that MySpace’s tentacles are expected to stretch further into the Latino realm into Latin America, with the beta launch of a “pan American” version. Shouldn’t that be MySpace en Español? It’s actually called MySpace Latinoamérica, which I guess isn’t so bad.
If you test drive MySpace en Español, please leave your impressions in the comments section, or email us your thoughts using the contact form.
Via / San Jose Mercury News