According to the Los Angeles Times, CBS is buying Last.fm for $280 million dollars. When I first heard this I was somewhat surprised because I was expecting a record label to snap it up sometime soon. According to a CBS executive, Last.fm is being purchased for its community, not just its well know audio (and now video) scrobbler. I find that a little strange considering the data that they hold would be extremely valuable to any record label. Imagine if you were able to track all of your customers usage habits. That would be valuable to just about any company.
If you are unaware of Last.fm, then you should definitely check it out. Last.fm provides users with a small piece of software that enables their site to track what music and videos you are watching. Ultimately they have some of the most advanced software for tracking attention data. As you listen to more music the software can make suggestions for other songs that you would like based on the vast amount of data that they store. I saw them speak at the Future of Web Apps conference earlier this year and they had some pretty impressive data (download the presentation here). Users of Last.fm listen to over 15 million track a day, spanning 10 million artists, and 70 million tracks. Pretty impressive stats. Congrats to Last.fm!