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New indie partnerships for MySpace Music

Nettwerk, INgrooves, Iris Distribution, RoyaltyShare, and Wind-up Entertainment join existing independent music outlets and major record labels on social network's music service.

When MySpace launched its MySpace Music service, a joint venture with all the major record labels, in September, it was subject to a persistent criticism: that independent music, the original backbone of the social network's success, had been put on the back burner in favor of the hits.

But now, the News Corp.-owned MySpace has added a handful of independent music partners, both labels and distribution companies, to bring more of the indies to its catalog. As of Thursday, Nettwerk, INgrooves, Iris Distribution, RoyaltyShare, and Wind-up Entertainment have joined MySpace Music, adding "several hundred thousand" songs.

To be fair, MySpace Music has had a partnership from the start with Sony ATV, which gave it access to other indie distributors like The Orchard and Fontana.

"These important new partnerships will allow the MySpace Music community to access even more of their favorite independent music while enabling monetization opportunities for the newly licensed artists," said MySpace Music President Courtney Holt, who was hired from MTV Networks to head the streaming music service. "We are thrilled to have our new partners on board and will continue our aggressive content acquisition efforts."