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06 Dec 2011 19:59


Tech: Pinboard founder: Free Web apps suck because they get acquired

  • What if a little site you love doesn’t have a business model? Yell at the developers! Explain that you are tired of good projects folding and are willing to pay cash American dollar to prevent that from happening. It doesn’t take prohibitive per-user revenue to put a project in the black. It just requires a number greater than zero.
  • Pinboard founder Maciej Ceglowski • Offering a rarely-heard take on the free-Web-app movement — that startups without business models are only hurting end-users, an argument that’s fresh in the minds of some after Gowalla’s staff got acquired by Facebook, but not its product. (This is a pain we know all too well, thanks to the pending death-by-acquisition of Apture and our scramble to replace it.) And in case you’re wondering, Ceglowski follows his own advice — he charges a one-time $9.55 fee to join his Delicious competitor. We’re with him (though we’re not opposed to the freemium idea that sites like Reddit use). We’ll gladly pay a $10 one-time fee to use a product if it means the product’s still going to exist in three years. source

02 Sep 2011 19:51


Biz, Tech: Netflix’s crappy day: As its stock falls, a new competitor shows itself

01 Jul 2011 17:25


Tech: Google’s eyeing Hulu, or reasons they might be getting too big

  • then Back in 2006, Google purchased then-fledgling YouTube for $1.65 billion — its biggest purchase ever at the time. The service has grown massive over the years but has struggled bringing major content creators like Viacom on board — a huge bummer for fans of “The Daily Show” in particular. In fact, Viacom sued YouTube to get them to remove the clips.
  • now Hulu, a service started in part as a major studio reaction to YouTube’s viral growth, is now in talks with Google, who may buy the company out — and in the process, get the lucrative content deals that have eluded YouTube over the years. (Microsoft and Yahoo are also eyeing the service, by the way.) Will we finally see “The Daily Show” on YouTube again? source
  • » We don’t know how to feel about this: While we appreciate the fact that Google might make “The Daily Show” happen on YouTube with a buyout like this (though Viacom has pulled their shows from Hulu in the past), if it actually happens, it runs directly into a wall of regulatory scrutiny — as Google’s been feeling the heat lately. While YouTube and Hulu aren’t the only games in town (hi Netflix and Vimeo), together they’re big enough that it would deserve some regulatory scrutiny if it actually happens.

06 Apr 2011 11:28


Biz: Dish Network’s Blockbuster buyout: Good or bad?

  • $320 million the amount Dish Network plans to pay for the bankrupt Blockbuster
  • $228 million the amount the company plans to pay in cash for the video retailer source
  • » A competitive deal? Dish Network, known mostly for its satellite dishes and for being the satellite company that isn’t DirecTV, will earn a competitive advantage by branching out with Blockbuster, which has a large infrastructure, if not money to pay for said infrastructure. For example, Dish Network could also offer Blockbuster’s Netflix-like DVD service on top of their already-robust satellite service. It’s synergy, folks! Another way to look at this: Blockbuster shares were delisted after trading for less than $1 for nearly a year. Netflix shares are trading around $250.

07 Feb 2011 00:23


Biz, Tech: Three things to know about AOL’s Huffington Post merger

  • one The buyout fits perfectly in with AOL CEO Tim Armstrong’s content strategy. It’s a strategy that led him to buy TechCrunch last year.
  • two The merger of the two companies has the potential to draw in 100 million viewers to a single Web conglomerate with many tentacles.
  • three Arianna Huffington will now be in charge of all of AOL’s editorial content – including such notable things as Moviefone and Mapquest.  source

07 Feb 2011 00:10


Biz, Tech: Huffington Post, AOL getting married, having lots of little articles

  • By combining HuffPost with AOL’s network of sites, thriving video initiative, local focus, and international reach, we know we’ll be creating a company that can have an enormous impact, reaching a global audience on every imaginable platform.
  • Arianna Huffington • Revealing to her readers that, holy crap, AOL JUST BOUGHT THE HUFFINGTON POST FOR $315 MILLION! THIS IS HUGE. LIKE BIG HUGE. This would be the largest deal AOL’s ever been involved in if not for that pesky Time Warner thing that ended up in tears for all involved – especially stockholders. source

23 Dec 2010 14:12


Biz: We hear Google bought this NYC building for over a billion dollars

  • See this building right here? It’s iconic in NYC – the former Port Authority building in the city. Guess who now owns it? That’s right, Google. In what could be the largest real estate deal in the U.S. this year, Google reportedly spent $1.9 billion on this building, which the company already uses for offices and data centers. Just to be meta, we grabbed the image using Street View. source

06 Dec 2010 09:50


Tech: Did Groupon make smart move by not selling to Google?

  • what Groupon, the quickly-growing deals site, reportedly declined a buyout offer from Google for a whopping $6 billion over the weekend. That’s a lot of money to turn down.
  • why The company’s CEO, Andrew Mason was concerned about the strategic direction under Google and what would happen to his loyal staff. So an IPO’s next. source
  • » A mixed record for startups: Some tech companies that have passed on the major buyout offers, like Facebook (which passed on a $1 billion buyout offer from Yahoo! way back in 2006), have only gotten much larger on their own. Other tech giants that missed the buyout opportunity – Yahoo! turned down an epic deal from Microsoft in 2008 and nosedived ever since. Other companies who have taken the buyout have had success stories (YouTube, which is a cornerstone of Google’s offerings) and precipitous declines (MySpace, which is trying to make a comeback; and Bebo, which sold to AOL and then lost nearly all of its value when it was sold again a couple years later). Which is to say, it’s too soon to know whether Groupon screwed up here.

05 Aug 2010 00:12


Tech: Facebook buyout: Friendster’s patents worth more than Friendster

  • $39.5 million the amount MOL Global paid for the also-ran, down on its luck social networking site, with a very depressing history, last year
  • $40 million the amount Facebook then paid MOL Global for Friendster’s broad patents on social networking (and a couple minor unrelated things) source

03 Aug 2010 00:00


Biz: Newsweek’s sale was for a bargain-basement price (and lots of debt)

  • $1 the amount Sidney Harman will pay the Post for Newsweek
  • $70M the amount of debt Harman will take on in exchange for the price
  • 250 the number of the mag’s 325 employees Harman will keep source