All the way back in 1996, a chance meeting between NBC News anchor, Tom Brokaw and Microsoft founder Bill Gates sparked the creation of a new way for viewers to get news. MSNBC.com was launched along with its cable television counterpart, the MSNBC network. The idea was for news coverage to be integrated between cable television and an online platform. Unfortunately, the vision has never been fully realized and the two mediums have always been programmed independently.
According to the Wall Street Journal, discussions about how NBC can buy Microsoft out of the partnership are currently underway. NBCUniversal holds a 50% stake in the venture, and, as you may have guessed, Microsoft controls the remainder. Adweek reported that the deal would most likely push for MSNBC.com to secure a spot on MSN.com.
By most accounts, MSNBC and MSNBC.Com have been functioning as totally separate entities for a long time now. The cable television component has gone more towards featuring the liberal side of things, while the online platform has, more or less, stuck to impartial news reporting.
I think we can expect to see some numbers coming out of these negotiations soon enough. We’ll be watching for new developments to come out, and as soon as they do, you can read about them here.