One of the most recent rumors is the attempt by NBCUniversal to invest even more in hot web commodity BuzzFeed.
According to CNN, NBC is poised to drop another $200 million into the infotainment website … yes another $200 million. The company poured at least that much into BuzzFeed last year, cementing a strong business relationship with a site that’s going gangbusters.
CNN tried and failed to get a comment out of BuzzFeed, who evidently wasn’t in a chatty mood. But you can bet they love this. For years now, Big Media has scoffed at online upstart, failing to compete with them on a head-to-head basis, simply because the networks didn’t feel they needed to. Then came the 2010 midterms and the 2012 election. Where once 24-hour news networks ruled political talk, the rise of Facebook and Twitter has brought political blogs and entertainment media sites broad and constant popularity.
BuzzFeed itself is a microcosm of what’s changing in media. The company has two main segments: entertainment video and news. While “news” struggles, entertainment is flourishing, and the company is investing heavily in new video content to maximize the obvious trend in online media.
Meanwhile, CNN reports that NBCUniversal also invested $200 million in another online infotainment site, Vox. More political and distinctly partisan, Vox tends to be the liberal version of sites like Drudge and WesternJournalism, covering up-to-the-minute news and events with a flavor that appeals to MSNBC viewers. Some have said this is NBC’s slow drift to counter FOX’s right wing bent.
But partisanship aside, this is really about an effective and impacting business model. The old way of doing the news just isn’t working for TV media anymore, and even the old guard are slowly adhering to the new normal … even if they won’t admit it.
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