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"Speakeasy clearly understands that on-demand entertainment services go hand-in-hand with fast connection speeds. And sometimes that doesn't mean porn."
——Listen President/
CEO Sean Ryan
ROUNDUP AT THE ONLINE CORRAL
Opening the Barn and Letting Out News from Music Choice, Radio Free Virgin and Listen.com
MUSIC CHOICE TAKES VITAMINIC, SLATES FEB. SKED
Boy, we felt like a real entertainment trade for a second while writing that headline. But now back to our regularly scheduled hackwork: The U.K. division of digital media network Music Choice has linked up with Euro-rich online empire Vitaminic for a digital distribution deal. The pact licenses 8,000 tracks to Vitaminic's network of Web properties from MC-owned MP3 site iCrunch, which agglomerates dance and indie music from an array of U.K. labels. The tracks will be available as single purchases or as part of the menu of the subscription-driven Vitaminic Music Club. The agreement, according to MC Dir. of Programming Janemarie Collen, "reflects our determination to deliver an unparalleled selection of digital music across Europe. We'll be delivering soap and decent breakfast food at a later date." Music Choice U.S.A., meanwhile, announced its February cable concert broadcast lineup, featuring Dave Matthews Band (Jan. 28-Feb. 10) and Bilal and City High (Feb. 11-Feb. 24). The 60-minute programs will mix live footage and interview segments. For times, contact your cable company.

RHAPSODIZING IN THE SPEAKEASY
Internet Service Provider Speakeasy announced today that it would make Listen.com's streaming music subscription service Rhapsody available to its customers, who can also take it for a free three-day test drive. The sub service, initially overshadowed by offerings backed by the major labels—which offered downloads as well as streams—has experienced a surge of good publicity of late, thanks to new deals with Sony, BMG and EMI (in addition to its previously brokered indie pacts) and good reviews for its sound quality, inventive Webcast programming and interface. Speakeasy and other broadband providers believe that music offerings will help drive consumer adoption of high-speed service, which fell off dramatically after the legal crash-and-burn of the original Napster. "Speakeasy clearly understands that on-demand entertainment services go hand-in-hand with fast connection speeds," declared Listen President/CEO Sean Ryan. "And sometimes that doesn't mean porn."

THE VIRGIN AND THE LOUDEYE: AN EROTIC TALE
Hey, you try to make this stuff sexy. Digital media service provider Loudeye has chosen Radio Free Virgin for its netcasting content. Loudeye, in turn, will be sticking intrusive ads into RFV's programming and charging advertisers up the wazoo. Sweet deal, huh? Loudeye is all high and mighty about its "server-side advertising solution," which allows for all sorts of data-mining (some of it probably legal), coupons and special promotions. "As one of the foremost Internet radio broadcasters, Radio Free Virgin is well positioned to benefit from the integration of streaming advertising content," declared Loudeye Chairman/CEO John T. Baker. "Now if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna go make my sales staff shake in their boots."

A HOLLY, JOLLY
HITS LIST
A December to remember (12/6a)
REVENUE CHART:
MALONE IS MONEY
Yet another post about Post (12/6a)
TAYLOR LIGHTS HER "CHRISTMAS TREE"
With lots of shiny tinsel (12/6a)
THE HAPPY WARRIOR OF THE RECORD BUSINESS
What a great guy (12/6a)
GRAMMY CHEW: WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE, ANYWAY?
Those who fail to learn from the past are destined to repeat it. (12/6a)
EGGNOG!
Ours is mostly bourbon.
MISTLETOE!
Delicious in salads.
CHESTNUTS!
Ours are roasting, but it could be these slim-fit jeans.
WEED!
An entire Christmas tree made of it. Is what we want for Christmas.
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