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Winamp Petition Emerges as Microsoft Considers Purchase

As previously reported, AOL plans to shut down Winamp after serving music lovers for around 16 years. The company didn’t state why the long-time service and app will be discontinued, only reporting that Winamp will no longer be available past December 20, 2013. We can’t even use it through the holidays.

Now there’s a petition to keep Winamp alive by making the client open source. "Winamp is the best media player ever built. If there were other alternatives that would be fine. But there is nothing that can do what Winamp can do. It is the most versatile media player on earth," the petition reads.

"It can't be left to die. It must live on. If AOL allows it to go open source it WILL live on forever and be in the hands of people who love it and use it every day. Please help by asking AOL to keep it alive or allow this software to go open source," the petition adds.

In just a matter of days, the petition has already gathered 6,638 signatures of the 7,500 needed, and the number continues to grow.

The petition may be unnecessary, as there’s talk that Microsoft may actually purchase both Winamp and SHOUTcast, a media streaming service also developed by Nullsoft. Sources claim that AOL was actually planning to announce the closure of SHOUTcast next week, which was created in 1999 and purchased by AOL in the same year.

Unnamed sources told TechCrunch, which is owned by AOL, that the deal with Microsoft has not yet been finalized, as the two media giants are working on a price. However selling both reportedly “makes sense”, as AOL is shuttering and selling off other music assets as part of "bigger strategic shift to focus resources as a web publisher". In addition to TechCrunch, AOL also owns Engadget, Huffington Post and a number of other tech blogs.

On the Microsoft front, a SHOUTcast purchase makes sense, as Nullsoft’s platform acts as a portal to over 50,000 radio stations, and would be an ideal feature in the Xbox Music platform. Winamp, on the other hand, is a different story given that Windows Media Player handles audio file playback. Perhaps merging the two would mean Media Player will receive some cool new skins?

Microsoft and AOL have declined to comment on the acquisition reports, so stay tuned.

  • back_by_demand
    If anyone were to buy it I would prefer MS, the Winamp tech would def improve WMP and SHOUTcast would be excellent as an integrated radio hopper - please buy it!
    Reply
  • Yuka
    Oh jeez. No, please no.

    Just make it opensource already so we can have it improved and put all its great features into more open stuff!

    Cheers!
    Reply
  • It would be better if it went open source, but Microsoft is better than dying, I suppose. It would be awesome if Microsoft replaced WMP (which sucks) with Winamp, but that will never happen.
    Reply
  • p05esto
    I'm still using a version of WinAmp that's probably 8yrs old. It works perfectly and does everythign I need, I use it all the time. Why exactly can't I keep using this version? If the WinAmp company goes away it won't affect me for another 10 years maybe. What am I missing here? They built the perfect MP3 player and could have retired 10 yrs ago.... there's no reason to keep updating and adding crap that no one uses.
    Reply
  • giovanni86
    Now winamp being sold or going open source doesn't bug me at all, i would prefer the open source option. But the shoutcast streaming is my greatest concern since thats what i use winamp for. Other then that that is pretty much all i use winamp for is ShoutCast. If shoutcast go's away then no reason for me to have winamp to begin with. So i'm very concerned now.
    Reply
  • Northwestern
    Already signed it yesterday. I'd rather WinAmp become open source so a community that has better judgement and cooperation than a dying internet company can actually make it what it should have been a decade ago.
    Reply
  • coolitic
    Open-source is always better (well, almost always)
    Reply
  • Northwestern
    Already signed it yesterday. I'd rather WinAmp become open source so a community that has better judgement and cooperation than a dying internet company can actually make it what it should have been a decade ago.
    Reply
  • stratplaya
    With apps like Winamp I've always wondered, is there a point at which development should stop on the application? That perhaps the product is great as is and doesn't need more features so that it can do everything under the sun. Just fix bugs as they pop up and that's it.
    Reply
  • knowom
    I don't see why people care Foobar is all ready open source and does pretty much the same things Winamp does.
    Reply