Saturday, November 15, 2003

WIPEOUT: MP3.com is one of those things on the web that works quite well - it provides a place for legal MP3 downloads, gives bands operating on a tight budget a place where they can store their MP3 files and invite fans to go to get hold of them (we're especially fond of the Melys page ourselves), and everyone involved even makes a little cash off it. The only slight problem is that the service had been gobbled up during the dotcom rush by Vivendi Universal, who are, of course, shit at managing businesses to such an extent they're now selling off their assests as fast as they can.

So, MP3.com has been sold to CNet, who have big plans for the site. It's going to become "the place you go to find out about music." Which is great - perhaps - but part of that involves closing down the whole current MP3.com in the first week of December, and deleting the three quarters of a million tracks that people have trusted to the service. In other words, CNet appear to have bought a service that was working pretty damn well, and doing something fairly unique, and thrown out the very reason why it was popular. So it seems they were merely interested in the domain name. Vivendi Universal get something to set against their massive pile of debt; CNet get a nifty web address. Hundreds of thousands of bands get shafted as a result. But hey... there'll be a place to go to "find out" about music from next year. Because there's nowhere like that online already, is there?


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