CBS Corporation has recently acquired Last.fm which is a social music site founded in the UK five years ago. Seeing as how CBS is a huge media company and CBS radio is the largest in the United States, this is a strong partnership.
CBS is not the first to snap up Web 2.0 companies. In 2005, News Corp paid $580 million for MySpace. In 2006, Google paid $1.65 billion for YouTube. These companies want to move from being content driven to audience driven. Some people wonder why big corporations pay so much and are so eager to acquire Web 2.0 companies. It’s all about the social revolution. Online communities are not built overnight. There is loyalty and a rich culture that cannot be duplicated. Sure there might be other sites that provide the exact same service, maybe even better, but they were late to the game. Sometimes it’s better to be first than to be good, you can always improve in version 2. Facebook for example started out small and was regulated to colleges before becoming a huge social network.
Since I indirectly work for CBS through Simon & Schuster, so I thought this was some great news. If anyone uses Last.fm, they now have the financial backing to be better.
What’s next? Facebook? Digg? Virb?