Viacom’s Web 2.0 Strategy: Leftovers


Viacom is buying Atom Entertainment, which is like the old school YouTube (minus all the fun stuff, aka the illegal content) for about $200 million. Atom owns Atom films and and a whole slew of other sites (including some gaming sites) and will become part of the MTV Networks division of Viacom. Viacom, is the very same company that lost out on MySpace and IGN, and was rumored to have balked on hefty price-tag on TheFacebook. Instead it ended up buying Xfire. Other acquisitions include IFilm, Y2M and Neopets. This seems like a “leftover strategy” to get some of the eyeball bonanza. Just like the old NBCi.


Jesse Kopelman

Since when has MTV been geared around musicians? Even when they ran music videos, the ephasis was always on the video side.


Viacom misses the boat constantly. I did an analysis on all their Internet Properties, and the traffic has been down in the last three months (

Instead of buying irrelevant companies, they could have married their MTV network with a social network. This would give MySpace a run for their money since MTV could have arranged their network geared around musicians.


Maybe it’s their way to acquire technology/internet software DNA on the not-so-cheap, it’s hard to imagine that any of these acquistions (except NeoPets) have a valuable brand or business for Viacom.

Though if I’m right, it seems like their skewing too much to the media side of the equation. A more “techie” institution like… perhaps Friendster would make the most sense IMHO. Integrate that with MTV’s competencies and you have a solid MySpace competitor.

As you suggested, maybe their just tactically trying to acquire eyeballs in the short term rather than investing in a long term strategy.


do you really think facebook or youtube are worth $1b+ each? (if the press reports of their asks are to be believed.) surely not. i agree that the illegal content is what makes youtube so awesome but really how much longer can that last?

admittedly news corp’s purchase of myspace was a masterstroke, but it is also an “eyeballs” play more than anything right now. is one of the top online casual gaming sites and in one fell swoop viacom now has 50m+ unique ppl playing casual games each month (according to their press relase anyway…)

i like viacom picking up smaller companies to help fill out its portfolio of digital assets – overdrive, urge, motherlode, all the wireless stuff they’re doing. i kinda feel like its coming together. kinda.

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