Five-year-old start-up SplashCast Media will be shutting down in the next few weeks. Co-founder and CEO Michael Berkley put out a company blog post earlier this week detailing the various directions the company had taken, going from an enterprise content management tool, all the way to a video player that was integrated with social networks like Facebook and MySpace--none of which were enough to keep it afloat.
"At each turn, we moved from what ultimately proved to be a declining market opportunity to a larger opportunity," Berkley said. "We have a lot to be proud of. In addition we have a lot of lessons learned to humbly take with us as we move on."
Berkley noted that one of the leading causes for the demise was publishers not wanting to pay to use its technology, which had previously been offered for free. He also said that the VC community was not willing to "bet" on the company, despite it picking up a $4 million Series A funding in late March last year.
Between becoming a social TV service, and its start as a CMS for enterprise users, one of the company's most interesting products was its consumer publishing platform. This would let anyone grab all types of media and mash them up into a single player that could be syndicated in various channels--regardless of the content type. This meant you could mix videos, photos, audio clips, and even RSS feeds.
It was one of the few products at the time that would actually let you get away with such a hodgepodge in a single package. This later developed into a professional publishing platform the company was unable to charge for, which definitely serves as a good example for other companies who may one day expect to charge for services that are currently being offered free of charge.