MLB Pulls Podcasts from iTunes Store

Effective immediately, Major League Baseball has removed its podcasts from the Apple iTunes Store. The podcast content, mostly made up of game recaps, is now available exclusively through the League s own Web site, MLB.com.

MLB Advance Media spokesman Jim Gallagher said that the League voluntarily removed its podcasts from the iTunes Store in an effort to gain autonomy in both promotion and distribution. The League does not expect either party to see any significant loss because of the decision. Neither iTunes nor MLB charge for podcast downloads, and the League estimates that its MLB.com portal was already the source of three-quarters of its baseball podcasts.

According to MLB Advance Media Chief Executive Bob Bowman, there are no hard feelings between the two companies. Still, pulling the podcasts may result in unforeseen consequences for other media outlets offering free content through the iTunes Store.

David Card, analyst at Jupiter Research, said that this is not an unusual move by the League s online division, which is very aggressive about managing its own content It s not particularly surprising that they want to be the primary distribution channel for their own stuff.