There have been Facebook music rumors for the past year on and off and recently it has been occuring freqequently. More unsubstantiated sources have told the Financial Times that Facebook is in discussions with music labels. While this partially makes sense, I think odds of Facebook partnering with music labels are currently 50/50. Any contact with the record labels would be seen as a direct attack against iLike, who is currently one of the largest application developers on the site.
When I suggested that Facebook launched a music service less than two weeks ago, they immediately replied with a statement that this was not an official music offering and was instead simply a feature that they can take advantage of. Ultimately, the statement was them trying to work around the real question. Within days I immediately began to hear that Facebook had partnered with large bands to host on the site. A follow-up inquiry to Facebook went without a response.
So is Facebook music launching? Well, there is already a feature that bands can leverage to gain exposure through the site but Facebook wants to avoid saying that they are directly targeting musicians with the offering due to the iLike conflict. It’s them simply dancing around the issue. Odds are that some sort of discussions have taken place but there is no determination as to how far those discussions have gone.