Microsoft and NBC to finally split: MSNBC.com to become NBCNews.com

“NBC and Microsoft plan to announce a deal to finally part company, with the network buying back the remainder of their hugely popular MSNBC website from the software giant, say people familiar with the matter,” Howard Kurtz reports for The Daily Beast. “Under the plan, officials will rebrand MSNBC.com, which consistently ranks among the top three in online news sites, as NBCNews.com.”

Kurtz reports, “The cable channel MSNBC was originally a joint venture between the broadcast network and Bill Gates’ company—hence the initials in the name—but the television partnership was dissolved in 2005. The companies, however, remained 50-50 partners in the website.”

“NBC executives have grown frustrated at not having sole control of the MSNBC website, which does original reporting as well as aggregating content from the AP, Reuters, New York Times and elsewhere,” Kurtz reports. “At the same time, as the MSNBC channel has forged a separate identity as the liberal home of Rachel Maddow, Chris Matthews, Ed Schultz and others, the company has worried about the brand confusion caused by its straight-news site bearing the same name. And the cable channel has lacked a site solely devoted to pushing its personalities.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: It was a stupid idea to begin with and the network’s and the website’s tech, tech reviews, and business reporting, at the very least, were always suspect because of Microsoft’s involvement and the idiotic branding.

We’d say exactly the same thing if it were AppleNBC, not that Apple, even in the dark days before Jobs’ second coming, would have ever been so stupid and hubristic as to enter into such a deal.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Mike D.” for the heads up.]

57 Comments

  1. Microsoft wanted content, NBC news wanted… what? Exclusive distribution through a strong portal via default IE home pages? Whatever the case, NBC News got “Played For Sure” on that branding marriage made in hell.

      1. I knew there would be someone who would attempt pick out one tiny example where MDN wasn’t gushing over whatever Apple did. So the light touch MDN takes when it states “Apple TV UI is not as intuitive as it could be” is balanced by the scathing bluster that is offered any company without a fruit logo?

        MDN takes, even these, are far from offering unvarnished honest balanced criticism of Apple mistakes, of which Apple like all companies make many and often.

  2. Those posts here that share incendiary language aimed at “libs” but without any insight as to what specific issue or data or strategy of MS or NBC clearly shows the number of people who live life in glass houses.

    Do you really think that MSNBC operates any differently than Fox News? How? The discussion here seems to reveal more about the commentor’s personal opinions and less to do with the success or failure of any media partnership.

    If NBC thought they needed microsoft to establish a beachhead on the internet, which is clearly what happened, then how can anyone argue that their website isn’t doing a very successful job, as evidenced by site traffic? Entertainment sells. Just like Limbaugh is a very popular radio entertainer — doesn’t mean he knows what the hell he’s talking about most of the time, but his conviction is infectious. So what’s the difference? Two sides to the same coin. There is no such thing as a lib without an equal and opposite con, just like you can’t define “bad” without comparing it to a “good”.

  3. Maybe they can now present news with even more liberal bias , and appeal to the far left-wing nuts. Oh that’s right, they already do! Just like the lame-brained assertion below from MSNBC. Want to see some Romney and Republican bashing? Just turn on MSNBC, NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, David Letterman, Bill Maher, The View, Oprah Winfrey, HBO, etc, ad nauseam.

    Here’s the latest zinger from MSNBC:
    Mitt Romney ‘deliberately got booed by the NAACP to appeal to white racists’

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2172593/Mitt-Romney-deliberately-got-booed-NAACP-appeal-white-racists.html#ixzz20QTkGMf6

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2172593/Mitt-Romney-deliberately-got-booed-NAACP-appeal-white-racists.html

  4. ABOUT TIME. This has consistently been one of the WORST WEB ENGINES on the internet…. 1st, get the Microshaft influence and 20-year old technology off the site.., 2) clean sweep the special-interest conservative garbage un-hooked from the sight so that reality at least has the chance to break thru…. BUT, with the people in place that still RUN and dictate the content of the sight in place the odds are still only 50-50 the sight be ever be much more…..

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