Thursday, December 04, 2008

Yahoo!'s Tunes Grow Ever Fainter

Yahoo! continues to increasingly distance itself from its music software and services business. First, a couple months back, Yahoo! Music (its music jukebox and subscription music services) left that space completely, handing over the keys to former rival Rhapsody. Now, Yahoo!'s online radio service, Launchcast, will no longer be stand-alone -- instead it will operate via CBS' webcasting network starting in February 2009.

Yahoo!, of course, has seen its share of difficult times this year (see my post from yesterday). And, the company's decision to rely upon CBS for providing its unprofitable online radio services was due, in significant part, to significantly increased operating costs -- notably, higher music royalties that must be paid to the U.S. Copyright Royalty Board (on behalf of the music industry) for streaming music online.

Yahoo!'s is not alone in moving its online radio service to CBS; AOL Radio did the same thing back in June.

After purchasing my former company, Musicmatch, for $160 million cash in 2004, the sound of music no longer is sung from the mountaintops at Yahoo! It has now become a faint din ...