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Investors Pull The Plug On Ads-As-Content Site Firebrand

Firebrand, a commercials-as-content startup with backing from NBC, is shutting down. The news was first reported by Gawker and confirmed by TV Decoder. The site, which remains up, announced its launch last September, with backers including the Peacock Equity Fund (NBC and GE), Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) and ION TV, which also broadcast its television show. Officially, the investors have decided to stop investing more into the site, although Gawker reports that they’ve told employees to stop coming and to turn in their BlackBerries. In addition to simply showing video ads as content, there was also a commerce angle to the site, a la HSN (NSDQ: HSNI). Other sites doing similar things include TBS’ Veryfunnyads.com and Honeyshed, which also has the HSN thing going. For now, everyone knows that people enjoy watching good commercials, but building a business off of this is a different matter.

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