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MySpace Tries Democracy in Ad Test

MySpace is putting its status as the biggest social network on the planet to the test with a new advertising platform. The site is officially launching its domestic beta of "MySpace MyAds" with the tagline: The affordable, effective way to promote yourself on MySpace.

The MySpace MyAds feature allows users to create customized banner ads, target to specific audiences using MySpace's HyperTargeting technology, and analyze campaign performance tracked throughout the MySpace ecosystem. It's a new, "do-it-yourself advertising platform that democratizes the landscape of online advertising," MySpace said in its announcement today.

MySpace said anyone -- from local retailers to musicians and politicians -- can use the platform to create relevant, targeted promotional business campaigns.

The new ad platform launch comes on the heels of data from Web metrics firm comScore that said MySpace's parent company Fox Interactive Media division served more display ads in June than any other U.S. Web property.

Of the 52.3 billion display ads FIM served, MySpace accounted for 51 billion. The nearest competitor was Yahoo (NASDAQ: YHOO), which served up 34.7 billion throughout its Web properties.

The new do-it-yourself ad platform for MySpace could become a test case to show that social networks can actually monetize the huge fan base they have amassed. MySpace, which claims more than 122 million worldwide unique users worldwide, said its HyperTargeting ad technology is a key underpinning of the platform.

"HyperTargeting enables marketers to connect with specific user groups on a massive scale based on self-expressed interests available on MySpace profiles. The technology allows any MySpace MyAds user access to targeting parameters such as age, sex, and geographical location, all in combination with thousands of user interest categories including specific keywords within each category," the company said in a statement.

Once the advertiser figures out creative, amount of spend, length of run and other details of the ad, the ad is then reviewed by MySpace's customer support group to ensure terms of service. If it passes muster, it's then up and being tracked for the advertiser.

"With MySpace MyAds, we're blowing the lid off display advertising solutions for small and medium businesses," Jeff Berman, president of sales and marketing for MySpace, said in a statement. "MySpace MyAds is a direct marketer's dream - providing entrepreneurs with the most accessible, personalized, and targeted advertising toolkit in the market."