Where's Facebook's Media Business?

For the past week or two I’ve been posting one article after the other on our other site, Social Times, about the new video services being rolled out by MySpace. One company that has been surprisingly absent from announcing any big media partnerships is Facebook, who has been pouring the majority of their resources into handling rapid growth, advertising sales, the largest open social platform, and the launch of Facebook Connect.

Everybody Else is Doing It

MySpace, Bebo, and even hi5 have invested some of their resources toward supporting what is rapidly becoming a thriving media business. The social networks have proven to be an efficient distribution channel for digital media and the recent launch of MySpace Music is a testament to that. Whether it’s music, movies, television shows, or short user-generated videos, social networks are rapidly replacing the television.

Exactly a year ago tomorrow, I wrote that social networks would become the next television. As new technology has emerged that lets digital content producers “finger print” their own content, it is now becoming feasible to let users share that content anywhere on the web without fear of lack of attribution. Even more important, that content can now be monetized across the web.

The trend is continuing toward digital distribution via social networks as they are increasingly one of the primary destinations for many users on the web. Social platforms also provide a great environment for media distribution as it provides users with the ability to interact socially about the content they are viewing.

Facebook is Surprisingly Absent

As new media distribution partnerships emerge at a break-neck pace, Facebook is amazingly silent on the issue. There have been rumors of a potential Facebook Music product in the future, and I’ve even spoken with sources who have commented on Facebook’s talks with music executives, but little has materialized. It’s clear that through distribution partnerships, monetization opportunities arise.

Also consider the massive amount of time already spent on Facebook by its users and there is a huge opportunity for the site to drive traffic to new media. So what is Facebook doing in regards to fostering new partnerships? Well aside from some minor chatter about the company speaking with music executives, there has been very little.

Whether or not the company is actively pursuing media partnerships, they definitely should. There is a huge opportunity to both drive engagement on the site and increase monetization opportunities. While I know that the company is focused on a number of other things currently, it would definitely makes sense to take advantage of all opportunities currently present rather than wait for much longer.