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Myspace's Justin Timberlake-Powered Relaunch Crashes Into Music Rights Problem

Merlin's deal with Myspace has lapsed.

Myspace recently orchestrated a dramatic overhaul in order to bring the ailing social network back to relevance in the time of Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook—but the New York Times says it's suffered a nasty setback recently as a group that represents thousands of independent record labels is accusing Myspace of publishing music without permission.

Merlin, a group that negotiates deals worldwide for smaller independent record labels, had a long-standing agreement with Myspace—but this deal has lapsed over a year ago and not been renegotiated. Meanwhile Merlin notes that music from over a hundred of its clients is still published on Myspace. According to the Times Myspace is placing the blame on individual users uploading infringing content.

Myspace's recent revamp was very much about making it the social network of choice for music content, and investor Justin Timberlake was a big part of the effort.

[Image: Flickr user edinthekitchen]

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