Facebook Debuts Entertainment Hub

by , Sep 19, 2011, 2:51 PM
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At long last, Facebook this week is expected to debut a spanning media platform, which will let users share music, TV shows and movies.

The move -- "effectively making the basic profile page a primary entertainment hub" -- is likely to come at Facebook's F8 developers' conference on Thursday, The New York Times writes, citing sources.

As CNet notes, The NYT report comes just days after "Dutch entrepreneur and developer Yvo Schaap spied a clue in the HTML for the Web sites of Spotify, Rhapsody, and several other major music services that pointed to some type of custom Facebook format."

Critically, as has previously been reported, Facebook isn't likely executing the hub alone, but rather with the help of content carriers like Spotify and Rhapsody.

"Last week, we heard the social networking giant will have at least seven launch partners (Spotify, MOG, Rhapsody, Soundcloud, Rdio, Deezer (France), and VEVO) for a service that could end up being called Facebook Music," ZDNet reports. "Another rumor says Hulu and Netflix may also be joining."

Yet, whether working with Facebook is ultimately to the advantage of these partners remains to be seen. 

"For cloud-based digital music services like Spotify and Rhapsody ... being friended by Facebook could prove to be a mixed blessing," NYT suggests. The added exposure will probably be a good thing. The problem? "The new plan will ratchet up the competitive pressure on these fledgling services, forcing them to offer more free music as enticements to new users," according to NYT.

Sources say Facebook has made agreements with a number of media companies to develop a way for a user's profile page to display whatever entertainment he is consuming on those outside services. While Facebook has yet to reveal any related initiatives, CEO Mark Zuckerberg did hint at its broader sharing strategy at a conference this week.

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