In a move of ninja swiftness, MySpace has acquired and subsequently shuttered iMeem in its entirety, even trashing the streaming/sharing music startup's API, which had heretofore supplied much-needed resources to a small but vibrant ecosystem of apps.
The acquisition was announced just yesterday, and developers were given no warning that their creations would become useless digital paperweights overnight. Among the detrius of the deal is twt.fm, a popular Twitter music-sharing app created by web dev Lee Martin, who tipped us off to his plight today in a blog post.
UPDATE: Users are also reporting problems with blip.fm, a popular music-streaming site that integrated results from iMeem.
Calling iMeem "one of the best API platforms," Martin, who works primarily in the music space, said that the startup was also "leagues ahead" of similar sites and services in terms of technology and openness.
"They represented the music business of the future. Now they are a forced hyperlink to a... MySpace landing page making false promises and giving no guidance or help for the developer community they just destroyed.
"Maybe MySpace will return my open streaming API platform... Until then, I'll be brushing the dust off my 1999 Dell computer and getting ready to program music websites like I did 10 years ago."
If indeed MySpace doesn't give developers back their iMeem API, will another streaming music service step in to fill that void? Pandora CEO Tim Westergren revealed in a recent interview that because of licensing issues, Pandora is nowhere close to releasing an open API. Last.fm has an API that allows for web, desktop and mobile development - and it's ironic that Last might have the last API for music mashup developers.
While we wait for comment from MySpace HQ, let us know in the comments what you think of this news, especially if you're a developer who has been using iMeem's API.