Microsoft has stood down from its role in MSNBC, the online news service long-standing joint partnership with NBC.
According to Associated Press, the break-up was announced yesterday and will see NBC buy Microsoft’s 50 per cent stake in the business for an undisclosed sum while the website has already been rebranded as NBCNews.com.
The offices of the website will also be moved from Microsoft’s Redmond campus to NBC’s New York headquarters.
Apparently the reasons for the split are divisions in strategic policy between the two companies. Microsoft was reported frustrated by contract terms that forced them to exclusively feature MSNBC content on its own websites, compounded by NBCs strategy to appeal solely to US liberal politics to act as a counterpoint to Fox News.
“Being limited to MSNBC.com content was problematic to us because we couldn’t have the multiple news sources and the multiple perspectives that our users were telling us that they wanted,” commented MSN.com’s general manager Bob Visse.
Microsoft is reported to be working on its own news service, which is expected to launch later this year.