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Facebook artist platform to include iTunes tie-ins

Facebook is reportedly working on an artist platform for musicians to be launched later this year that will rival similar offerings from MySpace and include tie-ins with Apple's iTunes Store.

According to the report by PaidContent, the social networking site, which caters to over 34 million registered members, is designing the platform to allow bands and labels to create artists pages, and allow various widgets to be embedded for music promotion, organizing events, and more.

"Among those widgets would be iLike, the most popular app inside Facebook, but will also include iTunes widgets for sampling (to begin with), and eventually buying music through Apple," the report states. "The service will still have the utilitarian sensibilities of the Facebook platform, the sources stress, rather than the more chaotic and flashy platform that MySpace has."

Facebook has reportedly been making the rounds of music labels trying to get this service off the ground, but will also have "an actual deal with Apple" as part of the music platform initiative.