In April 2006, Microsoft joined some venture capital firms to spin out unused Microsoft Research social networking technology into a startup named Wallop which seemed to be a poster child for their IP Ventures arm. Wallop launched a beta of their service almost exactly 2 years ago, but it is all over now as Wallop has announced that they will shut their social networking doors on Sept. 18.
All is not lost apparently as Wallop still has two Facebook/Bebo applications they are promoting. It’s just that the apps have little to do with the original Microsoft intellectual property or the Wallop intent of getting customers to "pay for pretty." This isn’t really a surprise since startups crash all the time, not just ones backed by big companies like Microsoft.