The MSN Soapbox Team confirmed today that they will be discontinuing its user generated video content service, here is what they had to say:
Attention Soapbox Users,
MSN will no longer offer Soapbox, the user generated video service within MSN Video, as of August 31, 2009. Beginning on July 29, you will no longer be able to upload videos to Soapbox. People who have uploaded videos to Soapbox will have until August 31, 2009 to download them. Please make sure you download your videos by this date if you would like to keep them. We will have a notice running in the Soapbox service to remind you to download your videos. It is our goal that you download and keep all of the videos you uploaded that are important to you. Online video is a key part of the MSN experience and we will continue to offer a rich experience on MSN Video. We will also continue to invest in delivering great customer experiences, while keeping a keen eye on our business objectives during this tough economic climate. Thank you for your support of MSN Video. More details and download instructions are available at: http://video.msn.com/shutdown.html
Thank you for using Soapbox.
The MSN Video Team
Microsoft launched MSN Soapbox in 2006. From my point of view, MSN Soapbox never caught on primarily because of the wildfire that was already set by rival YouTube, which really started the phenomenon itself and later ended being bought by Google. Other factors I believe included a more open platform that was not specifically tied to being invitation only or some form of upcoming technology (Flash vs Silverlight), it was all about the content for YouTube.