Lady Gaga and Eric Schmidt Invest in Backplane, a New Social Network

The new entertainment- and sports-focused social network in not up and running quite yet, but tidings of its forthcoming existence has just hit the electronic presses courtesy of Evelyn M. Rusli at the New York Times. Rusli tells that Troy Carter, Lady Gaga’s business manager, and his friend (in high-tech places) Matthew Michelsen are the proud founders of Backplane, a new startup set to release an online networking platform very soon.

It seems Carter was inspired by the work that both he and Gaga did for Steve Jobs, which is to say, provide some crucial feedback on Apple’s Ping. Most appropriately, considering Carter’s background in entertainment, Backplane’s platform will focus on enabling a more seamless management of celebrities’ fans across the big online networks. In Carter’s words: “We needed a more concentrated base.” Lady Gaga has a 20 percent stake in the Backplane venture and so far it has raised $1million from investors, among which Google emblem Eric Schmidt is to be found.

Although it is hoped the new network will not prove to be one more means of making fatally clumsy — at least for one’s mayoral ambitions — pseudo-amorous overtures à la Weiner, techies everywhere know that that’s a most unlikely scenario. In any case, as he prepares the big launch of his platform, Troy Carter must still sort out the business of the Lebanese “impounding” of Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way” at Beirut’s international airport. At least the album hasn’t been officially banned in that country. Good luck to Carter and good luck to the Lebanese fans.

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