How Dare You Make Our Service More Valuable! RealNetworks Shuts Down YottaMusic

from the not-allowed-to-make-things-more-valuable dept

It's sometimes amazing how shortsighted companies can be -- especially when they discover that others are making their own services better and more valuable. We've written about various threats and lawsuits against people who have made better interfaces for websites such as the Ellis Island listings and Odeon Cinemas' site in the UK. Now, as noted by Fred Wilson, it looks like the folks at RealNetworks have forced YottaMusic out of business for making Real's Rhapsody service a lot more userfriendly. TechCrunch suggests that there's some political reasons for the shutdown having to do with what APIs YottaMusic was using, but that's hardly an excuse for shutting down a popular site that only makes Rhapsody's service more valuable by creating an interface that many people prefer to Rhapsody's own interface. Users of YottaMusic still need to be Rhapsody subscribers, so it could only help to increase Real's subscriber numbers -- so it's hard to understand what the business rationale could be for shutting the site down.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    Just Me, Jan 3rd, 2008 @ 12:19pm


    I'm not familiar with these sites but let me see if I've got this straight;
    Rhapsody sells music for download. YottaMusic comes along and makes some kind of skin or client to allow Rhapsody users to get their music - without having any negative impact on Rhapsody - and they get shut down?

    Is that really the case?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    BCS Bill, Jan 3rd, 2008 @ 12:26pm

    there could be one reason

    paranoia. if rhapsody provides infra-structure for another company to grow and become a real 'share of business' owner.... yotta could then decide to cut out rhapsody and put out their own service with new contracts, then rhapsody in essence financed a new competitor. just my guess.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    dumb, Jan 3rd, 2008 @ 12:57pm

    Becasue people are

    That is why things that normal people cannot comprehend go on... Because the majority of the world is populated with dumb asses it should be no surprise when a dumb ass decision is made.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    Adrian, Jan 3rd, 2008 @ 12:58pm

    Re: there could be one reason

    Or they could have just BOUGHT YottaMusic for a reasonable price and made their superior interface their own. Thus providing a net gain for both parties. Stupid short-sighted management.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Capt. Brad, Jan 3rd, 2008 @ 1:20pm

    Actually, the Music Industry has more that its fair share of dumbasses!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    Coach George, Jan 3rd, 2008 @ 4:21pm

    Re: Re: there could be one reason

    Now that YottaMusic can't use it's interface, they are essentially out of business. This opens Real to buy them even cheaper.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    kiki jones, Jan 3rd, 2008 @ 4:45pm


    After they spend about 10 years hijacking the browser and player settings on every PC on the planet... they want someone to stay outta there stuff? Even when it makes them money? What morons, they should have hired 'em, not shut 'em.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. identicon
    Know real Business, Jan 3rd, 2008 @ 6:41pm

    Maybe because users of YottaMusic called and demanded support from Real Networks because users are often stupid about the idea of using customer stuff means little or no support.

    Could be a stupid move as stated, could be stupid users made letting it continue a cost drain to Rhapsody. Who knows..

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. identicon
    Pepsi Man, Jan 3rd, 2008 @ 6:53pm

    Only a dumbass uses real player

    Only a dumbass uses real player to begin with so no-one is really getting hurt here.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. identicon
    joe Schmoe, Jan 4th, 2008 @ 7:21pm


    obviously the reason for shutting it down is old fashioned: embarassment at having such a crappy interface themselves, coupled with the fantasy that if they make better ones go away, no one will notice this...

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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