On a spree of acquisitions including LastFM and WallStrip, it looks like CBS is seriously in the game. I cant help but think Quincy Smith is hitting his stride inside CBS. His experience in the world of Silicon Valley VC and New Media financing with Allen and Co, has him well prepped to bring CBS along in this new and dynamic media landscape.
It seems that the recent acquisitions show that CBS understands that the new social components to distribution that deliver context to media are just as important as the content itself. Many have opined lately that the “new” web represents two styles of “operating systems”. The first is the search engines such as Google, that deliver a gateway into the rest of the web and apply contextual (machine mediated via algorithms) relevance to the myriad of media and information available from a browser. The second “operating system” is represented by the social networking sites that provide social relevance by suggesting similarities between two people and their likes and dislikes. LastFM clearly falls into the second category and will provide CBS with the technology and social infrastructure to deliver their media assets into more willing and responsive eyes.
This move is both intelligent and exciting for those of us following evolution of online media, as it represents another major player (besides Fox) buying into the “social networking ” operating system as a way to allow their content to be distributed relatively unhindered by the ‘command and control’ policies that most media companies still practice today.