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2006-2007 Project Proposals for Personalized News Aggregation

Early proposals for MySpace News included personalized news based on each user's preferences. Using terms found in the user's profile describing their interest, a customized newspage would be created for that person, which could later be edited. In keeping with MySpace's high degree of personalization, the design allows users to customize and skin their newspages, and drag-and-drop style the page layout. Other bits of information from a user's social network could also be incorporated as page widgets.

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Example of a customized newspage featuring 50 Cent. Users could see a stream of news articles their friends had commented on or had "picked" as favorites. There could also be widgets featuring other kinds of user-generated news, such as friends posting pictures. Interface featured moveable layout, various display types, and custom skin, color and transparency of widgets.
Additional image of 50 Cent customized newspage. Widgets were designed to highlight what could be newsworthy to a MySpace user: new things, cool stuff that could be socially relevant (events, for example), Videos, Photos, as well as news verticals that related to that user's interests, such as Music or Gossip.
Default display colors for early MySpace News. This page, which has been pre-populated with interests designated in the user's profile information, features a "how it works" box at left explaining how to customize your page.
Another view of the default newspage. In keeping with the lively and young MySpace community, the design features lots of images and color. User comments include the user's profile picture. At the bottom of each news widget, a small space was allocated for contextual text ads.
Another image of default newspage. In addition to vertical news topics, the pages also included things like Photos, Videos, Upcoming Events, and news recommended by friends.
Idea for a profile page Newsbox. Since users spent the majority of time on profile pages, having news one's profile page allows for quick access to news. Users could customize the newsbox by selecting feeds to subscribe to. Users could also add to and curate lists of favorite articles which other users could subscribe to.
At left, a proposal for a general news page where one could view a selection of news and news activity from across all of MySpace. Users could submit their own stories as well as browse through a list of over 200 news topics. At right, the personal newspage which catered to each user's unique interests.
Each news topic had its own color theme. Early mockups like these reflected a look and feel similar to MySpace. Later mockups have a much more refined, less visually chaotic appearance.
Sports Newspage had it's own color scheme, as did each of the 20 main news categories. As with the previous image, this mockup was part of an early strategy to fit in with the look and feel of MySpace.
When a user clicked, "submit a story", they would get this pop-up. In addition to adding a title, url, and labeling it with a category, the user could also add expressive tags as a kind of shorthand comment on the story.
Very early mockups of Gossip and Sports pages.
Mockup exploring news display options.
News Linkframe: when a user clicked on a story, the page was iframed with a horizontal header strip allowing the user to rate, share, and comment on the story being viewed. These mockups illustrate how the linkframe works when users are adding expressive tags, a kind of colorful shorthand comment, to the story.
View of the the linkframe as viewed in a web browser. The short height minimizes the amount that the page's content gets pushed down.
Various flow diagrams from the user's profile to newspage to linkframed content.