MySpace anti-product placement in popular flick

The social network enjoys something of a product placement humiliation in the new romantic comedy He's Just Not That Into You. Did News Corp. know it was going to be featured?

Chances are, many of you will be going next weekend to see He's Just Not That Into You.

Some will see this, already America's No.1 movie, willingly, even enthusiastically. Others will perhaps grimace and bear it in the commitment to a higher cause.

However, while you are enjoying "I'm a Mac" icon Justin Long channeling his inner Vince Vaughn with the aim of keeping women at torso's length, you might also notice that MySpace plays a role in the movie. One that might best be described as the sleazy character that no one loves and everyone wishes would just die.

I don't want to spoil the plot too much for you (because it has so many surprises, you'll have troubled maintaining consciousness), but I was persuaded to spend a couple of hours in the company of He's Just Not That Into You this weekend. And rarely have I seen a brand so tersely derided on the wide screen.

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One of the characters, Mary, played by Drew Barrymore, is an ad sales lady looking, as all ad sales ladies seem to be, for love. She is attempting to find it by meeting people on MySpace. However, she is advised by her nearest and very dearest (yup, gay co-workers- this is a Hollywood movie) that MySpace is something of a sleazy joint in which to be casting for pearls.

Then, near the end of the movie, I could have sworn that she finds her ultimate love liberation in closing her MySpace account.

Which led me to wonder (only for a moment or two, but still) whether MySpace was aware of this shining portrayal in advance. Perhaps it's a post-post modern attempt at self-irony. Or perhaps whoever wrote the script had a difficult and perverted experience on the site and needed to eke out his or her pain.

Of course, there's also the extremely cynical idea that the movie was produced by New Line Cinema, a division of Warner Bros, while MySpace is the full brother of 20th Century Fox. But I can't believe anyone would stoop so low merely for commercial reasons.

I am sure you all have your own views of MySpace. Just as you will all have your own views of this star-crossed filmic homage to Jane Austen by next Sunday morning. (Saturday's Valentine's Day. What do you mean you didn't know?)

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