Friday, December 09, 2005

Yahoo buys del.icio.us

Just eight months after taking funding, the popular social bookmark website del.icio.us gets acquired by Yahoo.

Jeremy Zawodny has the announcement on the Yahoo Search blog and Joshua Schachter announces on the del.icio.us blog.

Yahoo seems to be making quite a push on tagging and social software. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

See also my previous posts, "Questioning tags" and "Yahoo gets social with MyWeb".

Update: Greg Yardley claims the deal is rumored to be for $30M and computes that that works out to roughly $100 per user. Yowsers. Greg goes on to say, "Yahoo didn't buy del.icio.us' technology; it bought our bookmarks and tags - and for quite a price."

Update: John Battelle says his sources also put the deal at around $30M.

Update: Paul Kedrosky's sno.oker.ed post is pretty amusing. Some good points from Paul and in the comments on the post. [via Om Malik]

7 comments:

Elroy Jetson said...

While every one is looking over at Google and Microsoft Yahoo! is building steam. What the acquisition of del.icio.us does is provide Yahoo! with a consistent view of its users. They will force everyone to switch to using a yahoo id, much like they did with flickr. Now they have a ton of new data to mine from potential customers/ad viewers. All this data was provided when no one worried about its use since it wasnt being used. Therefore its likely to be really good data.

Yahoo! is so under-valued, while Google is soooooo over rated.

Anonymous said...

The prices quoted are way overblown. It was closer to $10 million, with earnouts.

Greg Linden said...

Thanks, Anonymous, that does sound more level-headed. And that would match Om Malik's guess of $10-15M.

jeff.dalton said...

Even at $15M this is still roughly 50 dollars per user!

Yahoo has 430k pages and 108k pages in My Web 2.0 according to the homepage. How does this stack up against Delicious?

How much do you think this bootstrapping of My Web 2.0 will really help Yahoo?

Spammers will game this just like they have link text. The real question is, what anti-spam features can they add to make this more resilient? What makes this different?

Greg, you've pointed out that these systems are susceptible to spam. I just saw "Everybody's Links" on the My Web homepage: Number one result "Big Tits Porn Site Reviews." Number eight looks like Chinese "李毅大帝本纪(文言+白话)". It's beginning, and Yahoo hasn't filtered it out, yet, hopefully soon.

Lastly, it would be nice if My Web 2.0's import feature worked properly. Look at the most popular tags in the community: "imported rss" and "imported bookmarks" top the list. These two tags alone count for 35k out of the 108k total tags. Interesting. I've also had some problems deleting bookmarks from My Web 2.0, frustrating.

Hopefully, the expertise of Josh and company will help to improve things!

If you are interested, you can read my full response.

Greg Linden said...

Great points in your comments, Jeff, and I enjoyed your post as well.

I'm curious to see whether sites like del.icio.us and My Web 2.0 can appeal to mainstream users, grow to scale, and deal successfully with the massive influx of spam that they will attract at scale.

More on that in my earlier post, "Questioning tags".

Greg Linden said...

To follow up on my last comment, I just saw what Om Malik thoughts on del.icio.us and their 300k registered users:

"Future growth was going to be expensive ... and they decided to sell out ... [It] makes you wonder if the whole Web 2.0 thing is still in a very-early adopter stage. Even the Yahoo’s own MyWeb effort is stuck in the low gear. I get a feeling that it will be a long time before the concepts filter into mainstream usage."

b7j0c said...

how will this really impact yahoo's mainstream demographic of users? yahoo has offered a new lease on life to many viable services, but its not clear how many of the acquisitions of the last two years impact their clearly not-early-adopter/utilitarian userbase.

maybe they are setting these boutique services up for paid use in the future. would be a decent idea, they, like google, are perhaps a little too hitched to ad revenue. this has already bit yahoo in one downturn. google has not been a public companhy during a widespread pull back in ad spending, will be interesting to see how they manage.