Is Facebook Music Coming?
October 17, 2008 at 5:25 AM (PT)
FACEBOOK boss MARK ZUCKERBERG is plotting a possible push into the digital-music business in the wake of MYSPACE's launch of MYSPACE MUSIC last month, reports TODAY's NEW YORK POST. The social-networking giant is talking to a number of song-streaming services and music community sites, including RHAPSODY.COM, IMEEM.COM, ILIKE.COM, and LALA.COM, about an outsourcing deal that would more deeply integrate their music experience into FACEBOOK, sources familiar with the situation said.
ZUCKERBERG and other FACEBOOK executives also have been busy taking meetings with the major record companies about the strategy.
The company has a checkered past with the recording industry. In AUGUST 2007, it was forced to pull the plug on AUDIO, a popular third-party application that allowed users to upload and stream music, in the face of label complaints of copyright violation. Record execs protested that FACEBOOK was engaging in "massive infringement."
That history may impact current talks, especially as record companies seek leverage for participation in the upside of any new FACEBOOK music offering, sources said.
But a formal FACEBOOK foray into digital music would be decidedly different than MYSPACE MUSIC, which is a joint venture between the online powerhouse and the world's four biggest record companies -- UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP, SONY BMG, WARNER MUSIC GROUP and EMI.