Thursday, April 21, 2011

Is there a viable alternative to Facebook on the horizon?

By Mike Galaxy
New tech trends are racing up and down the digital super freeway at break neck speeds. Just as a new start up builds momentum and acquires financial seeding, there is another company in development ready to knock them off their PR podium. Myspace did it to Friendster. Facebook did it to Myspace. And now it appears there are some new companies aiming their sites at Facebook with plans to take down the networking empire with their own plans for a new social society.

According to a very brief tweet this morning from former Myspace CTO Dmitry Shapiro, it appears that he is planning to take on Facebook with his new start up Altly tweeting, “I know it sounds crazy, but our new company,, is building an alternative to Facebook. More details soon :)". 

So, what exactly is Altly you ask? Hell, we don't know either. The web site merely states that they are working on an alternative and provides an email contact. Is this is a shameless plug, or a calculated PR move? Either way, it has got my attention, as well as some other insiders buzzing. 

Dmitry Shaprio's entrepreneurial credentials go back to 2005 when he founded and launched Veho, an internet television platform with heavy funding coming in from Time Warner, Goldman Sachs, Michael Eisner and others. The online TV site went belly up in 2010 filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. Shapiro then joined Myspace attempting to resurrect the social site but leaving abruptly after only a year. Shapiro has also held web development positions at and Fujitsu Business Communication Systems.

All updates on Altly and Shapiro's plans will be posted here. Meanwhile, we can all set our Email News Alerts on this subject to stay current with developments. 

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Stay Cool on Record Store Day

There are two major music events going on this weekend. Coachella Music Festival and National Record Store Day.
Which will you attend?
Well, if you're like me and opted to save the truck load of cash it costs to attend the three days of sonic sauna, accommodations and of course the extra ticket for your lover, then you will likely want to do something fun to take your mind off of Coachella Depression. Record Store Day just might do the trick. Besides, it's supposed to be over 100 degrees at the Coachella Fest, so why not stay cool, and surf the local record stores?
Here are just some of the events happening in and around the Los Angeles area this Saturday. Be sure to load your smart phone up with social apps Beluga, Hurricane Party, Fast Society, FourSquare, GroupMe etc and connect with all your friends while they flip through newly released vinyl and rock out to local rock bands.

Get to Amoeba Hollywood early and get a free Ltd edition Record Store Day Tee from Anti and Epitaph Records and Family Industries. At 2pm, the legendary Henry Rollins will play DJ. Then head up Sunset to Echo Park's newest record dispensary, Origami Vinyl where they will fill their tiny store with hundreds of new releases and performances by the Growlers and a special Guest at 2pm. The Eagle Rock / Highland Park vinyl store, Wombleton Records, may not be an official Record Store Day store, but they will be open and offering tons of deals that you won't find at the other shops, like thousands of cheap records including $1 vinyl and discounts on some great imports not found anywhere in town. One of LA's oldest shops, Rockaway Records is also offering some great deals slashing as much as 50% on most items in store including vinyl, CD's, shirts, posters and more...but excluding all Record Store Day releases...and they've got over 300 RSD releases this Saturday. Rockaway is also raffling off a signed Alice Cooper guitar. For those of you in Orange County, head over to historic Fingerprints in Long Beach. This is definitely the hot spot in the OC on RSD with Fucked Up performing at 2pm and Foo Fighters at 5pm, although I hear this show is sold out. If you want a chance to win Foo Fighter tickets, Music Saves Lives is giving a pair away.
For those of you not living in sunny Southern California, visit for more locations closer to your hood.

Here are some records I suggest you grab this Saturday.
Belle Brigade The Belle Brigade LP, Black Angels Another Nice Pair (RED%Vinyl) 12", The Cars Sad Songs 7", Civil Wars Dance Me To the End of Love 7", Dengue Fever Cannibal Courtship  LP, Fleet Foxes Helplessness Blues 12", Fleetwood Mac Rumours (Deluxe)(2LP 180 Gram Vinyl 45RPM) LP, AND Villagers/Charlote Gainsbourg  Memoir/Set The Tigers Free 7"

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The decline of an internet socialite...

By Mike Galaxy
Back in 2003, an old friend of mine Tommy, from the 90's LA rock scene, emailed me an invite to join Friendster. I was like, huh? What is this? Some high school "Click"? Which frankly, I was very much anti and against. But, within a few months, several friends of mine in LA began joining in rapid numbers. So, I reluctantly signed up...and eventually, like everyone else, was addicted. Friendster was like the fun rich kid in school who would pay for all the nights out on town, and the boating trips to the lake. Then it was clear he wasn't really that cool. Then a new kid from California moved to the neighborhood with Vans shoes, a skateboard, and a Black Flag cassette. This was Myspace to all of us. We all abandoned our brief encounter with Friendster and joined the new Myspace in droves. Myspace was fresh, cool bells and whistles and spoke more of our language. Then coolness got better when they catered to all the indie bands allowing artists to post songs, photos and performance dates. All was going well until the Faux News head and staunch republican Rupert Murdoch tossed his coins into the mix. I knew instantly that this would not bode well for the millions of anti Bush, forward thinkers who were calling Myspace home several hours per day. I could feel the coolness factor declining...and the fact that Myspace began appealing more towards wannabe hookers and perverts using the network as a sophisticated Craigslist styled hook-up service, made it less cool as a friends club.

Soon after, I would begin to ignore my personal Myspace page and focus on my music business page, and scout bands using Myspace Music as an effective search tool for new music. Then came along another rich kid to our school...and he was cool. This was Facebook. As soon as the non-academic web socialites were allowed to join Facebook, we did in large numbers. Within months nearly every single friend and business colleague had a Facebook page. That was 2006. Now Rupert and his Mace Space have chased off nearly half of it's users, and the other half, rarely to never log in. Myspace is now old news and part of the history books.

Here is a fantastic article about the rise and decline of Myspace.