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Ping: Apple and Facebook Negotiated for 18 Months Over It

Remember Ping? Yeah, that social network thing that launched together with iTunes 10 icon. No wait, it actually launched together with iTunes 10 - I think so.

Anyway, Silicon Alley Insider reports that Apple and Facebook negotiated for at least 18 months over a "music-focused social networking service", but couldn't find a deal before Apple decided to let Ping fly with its own wings.

Before Apple launched Ping, its iTunes team was in talks with Facebook for 18 months or more, a source with knowledge of the talks tells us.

While we don't know the details of their discussions, it makes sense that Apple may have wanted to build Ping as a music-tracking and sales service on top of Facebook's social graph. This could have allowed Apple to get what it wanted out of the relationship -- more iTunes and iPod sales -- without having to build a social network from scratch.

It makes sense: Apple must have thought that Facebook's immense database would be a pretty damn good starting point for a music-based social network, and they tried to convince them to build one. They failed, so what? They went for a similar route: iTunes existing music database. Who knows, maybe Ping "made in Facebook" would have been a lot better.