BitTorrent Shuts Down Streaming Service, Reportedly Fires CEOs in Massive Layoff Move

BitTorrent Shuts Down Streaming Service, Reportedly Fires CEOs in Massive Layoff Move
Having only launched music and video streaming service BitTorrent Now back in June of this year, the short-lived platform has now been shuttered by its parent company. On top of that, the company is also reportedly letting go of co-CEOs Robert Delamar and Jeremy Johnson.

Variety reports that the changes were laid out in an email from BitTorrent founder Bram Cohen earlier this week. The memo also revealed that the company would be closing its Los Angeles production studio and laying off staffers, in addition to removing Delamar and Johnson from their seats on the company's board of directors. 

Delamar and Johnson were named as co-CEOs in April of this year, leading a push towards media production with the introduction of BitTorrent Now. Described as a "rabbit hole of on-demand songs, stories, and more for fans looking for that next best thing," the service featured free streaming of audio and video, with pre-roll ads bringing artists and creators 70 percent of revenues. Artists would retain 90 percent of revenues for direct sales.

Variety also reports that insiders said the company spent millions of dollars on Now, with one source describing the spending as "out of control."

"We believe we can help solve some of the most troubling problems facing creators in the digital age," Johnson told VentureBeat upon the app's launch in June. "The Internet has the promise of a direct connection between creators and fans: the ability to facilitate a dialogue and a collaboration. Yet, in the digital age, art has increasingly become commoditized. Existing platforms impose business models, format restrictions, algorithmic discovery; all of which are barriers between artists and fans … the creative vision and connection to fans is not a priority."