It was revealed yesterday that MSNBC.com (or as they like to call it these days – the msnbc Digital Network) purchased the breakingnews.com URL in December for an undisclosed price:
The msnbc Digital Network today announced its acquisition of the URL www.breakingnews.com. Breakingnews.com aims to be the fastest, most accurate site for live breaking news from around the globe. The site currently features up-to-the-second headlines from multiple news sources and will continually advance to meet hard news consumers’ expectations.
Actually, it currently seems to merely reproduce the @breakingnews Twitter feed, but that is apparently the point since MSNBC.com took over management of @breakingnews in November. So what’s the rationale for all this?
The latest addition to the msnbc Digital Network will focus on up-to-the-second news coverage from multiple sources, executives of the company said. (Msnbc.com is a Microsoft – NBC Universal joint venture.)
"It’s a different experience for news users, rather than any kind of diminishment for msnbc.com," Charles Tillinghast, president of the msnbc Digital Network, said in an interview. The move is "consistent with our strategy of creating different news experiences for different user interests," he said.
"Not everyone wants news surrounded by commentary or features," he explained in a statement. "Our goal as a news organization is to provide the most relevant experiences to satisfy distinct needs. Hard and fast breaking news is currently an underserved market. With www.breakingnews.com we can now provide the optimal solution."
Well, presuming someone looks at it instead of the Twitter feed, you can put ads on a Web page
MSNBC.com (the 50/50 Web partnership of Microsoft and NBC) has acquired "hyperlocal" news aggregation site EveryBlock:
Msnbc.com has acquired EveryBlock, a Chicago-based Web site that offers news and information down to the neighborhood level in 15 cities, the two companies announced Monday.
EveryBlock, which will continue as an independent brand, allows users to type in their address, neighborhood name or ZIP code to view nearby news coverage, blog entries, civic data, photos and dozens of other types of information — all updated throughout the day.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Note that EveryBlock aggregates news from other sources for the 15 major cities that it covers. EveryBlock has only 5 employees and not much traffic so presumably this is a technology and talent acquisition.
MSNBC.com, the 50/50 partnership of Microsoft and NBC, today announced that it had acquired Newsvine com, one of the new breed of “social news” Web sites. The all cash deal was effective October 5, but the price isn’t being disclosed.
Sarah Ellison and Dennis K. Berman are reporting in the Wall Street Journal (a Dow Jones publication) that in recent weeks General Electric and Microsoft were in discussions about offering an alternative bid to News Corp’s proposed acquisition of Dow Jones from the controlling Bancroft family. Apparently GE and Microsoft couldn’t reach an agreement and GE may look for another partner to make a bid. It isn’t really clear what part Microsoft would have played in the deal other than providing a fat wallet and experience in partnering with GE in MSNBC.com and the MSNBC TV cable channel.