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Panasonic buys into JT's MySpace TV experiment

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Has Justin Timberlake just sounded the death knell for subscription TV? Timberlake and Specific Media, the new co-owners of Rupert Murdoch’s digital mischance MySpace, have unveiled a new platform with Panasonic which they claim that it will transform the television experience into a social one.

Previewed at CES, MySpace TV will be available on the next generation of Panasonic VIERA Connect HDTVs and will allow Myspace TV users to add recommendations, live chat and other features to their TV watching.

Described by Timberlake as the "the evolution of one of our greatest inventions, the television," the service will launch in the first half of this year.

Initial channels on the over-the-top TV service will be music-focused and use the network's library of 100,000 music videos and 42 million songs. However, Myspace TV will eventually expand beyond music "to encompass movies, news, sports and reality channels, with a growing lineup of today’s most popular broadcast and on-demand content," the partners said.

A mobile app for Myspace TV will be available on tablets and smartphones around the same time.

Timberlake said, “we’re ready to take television and entertainment to the next step by upgrading it to the social networking experience. Why text or email your friends to talk about your favorite programs after they’ve aired when you could be sharing the experience with real-time interactivity from anywhere across the globe?

"As the plot of your favorite drama unfolds, the joke of your favorite SNL character plays, or even the last second shot of your favorite team swishes the net, we’re giving you the opportunity to connect your friends to your moments as they’re actually occurring.”

Myspace is currently inviting a select audience to participate in the beta launch of its TV service through a fully integrated experience on laptop devices. You can ask Justin to be considered for an invite at http://www.myspace.com/tv. ®

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