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TheStreet Open House

Marissa Mayer's Biggest Game Changer Yet

Stocks in this article: YHOO GOOG

As I noted in the September article about Google/YouTube and live concerts, the music industry sits on what is easily a multi-billion dollar opportunity:

YouTube and the music industrial complex could ... mov(e) to a format where any act with an interest can facilitate a live stream. Charge whatever the going rate might be ($1.99, $2.99, $5.99, market price) for each show in each city on each tour. You can couple pay-per-view concerts with merchandise sales, offers to subscribe to services such as Pandora and directives to download songs from Google or wherever else.

This is being done in fits and starts in various corners of the Internet, but it's not happening -- full-go -- anywhere. Yahoo! could step in and absolutely take leadership in the space almost instantly.

Yahoo! recently live streamed a show, hosted by Ryan Seacrest, where One Direction played songs from their just-released album. Advance promotion gave visitors to Yahoo! sites the option of receiving an email or mobile reminder just prior to the show's start. My daughter was all over it. She was hardly alone.

There's nothing stopping Yahoo! from signing deals with bands like -- and not like -- One Direction to live stream entire tours. A nominal charge per show and/or monthly, or yearly access fees add up fast. Heck there's nothing stopping Yahoo! from buying indie labels or partnering with them and/or the majors.

This is new ground to stake, and it will quickly become holy ground. The music industry has entered a new frontier. The companies recognizing the opportunity and move aggressively to capitalize on it will win. And big.

Why not Yahoo!? The company certainly has a beyond-savvy CEO. Speaking of the music industry ... just like Taylor Swift, Marissa Mayer is a crossover artist, blurring the boundaries between tech, media and entertainment. Yahoo! has attempted similar strategies for years; finally, it appears to have people in place who can execute.

--Written by Rocco Pendola in Santa Monica, Calif.

Rocco Pendola is a columnist for TheStreet. Pendola makes frequent appearances on national television networks such as CNN and CNBC as well as TheStreet TV. Whenever possible, Pendola uses hockey, Springsteen or Southern California references in his work. He lives in Santa Monica.
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