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social bookmarking Archive
The big story today outside of the OMG white OMG iPhone OMG was the acquisition of the Delicious bookmarking site. Former owner Yahoo has sold the bookmarking service to the founders of online video sharing service YouTube and their new company AVOS. In reviewing about 20 blog/news posts about the acquisition, so far there has been no chatter about the acquisition price.
Back in December, Yahoo hinted that they would close Delicious service – a move I noted would hurt Yahoo within the developer/early adopter tech community. I also thought the best place for Delicious would be to be acquired by commenting service Disqus. I still think Disqus should consider expanding into bookmarking as it would make the service more sticky and could provide even more benefits to publishers.
This evening I received an email from Yahoo regarding the Delicious acquisition. There are a couple of interesting bits that got me wondering exactly what did YouTube founder Steve Chen and Chad Hurley purchase? I assumed when I read all of the copies of the press releases that the Delicious site would be put onto a blu-ray disc, handed off to AVOS, and then the entire service would be available as it is today but now hosted by AVOS.
Earlier this month Yahoo announced that they would be selling, no closing, no sun-setting, no selling the bookmarking service Delicious. Many tech bloggers were very upset at the non-announcement by Yahoo. I believe that Yahoo made developers angry by closing (now they are selling) Delicious.
I immediately thought that the best possible acquirer for Delicious was Disqus. I still believe commenting service Disqus is well positioned to acquire Delicious.
AOL Techcrunch blogger Michael Arrington noted yesterday that Yahoo turned down a Delicious sale in 2009 with an acquisition price of $15 million. He also noted that his base of contacts would be interested in an acquisition with a sub-$5 million dollar pricetag.
Let me explain why Disqus + Delicious makes sense and would help increase Disqus’ visibility and stickyness. More and more sites that I use on a daily basis are using Disqus for their commenting engine (I use Disqus on my transit resource InsideTransit). Disqus provides a page (which I doubt many people ever visit) where you can view all of your comments – or anyone else’s comments left using the Disqus service across any blog.
Online bookshop Barnes and Noble has announced the launch of "Blogging Booksellers" today. This new blogging area is part of the Barnes and Noble Studio.
The idea is to take the "booksellers" found in local stores and bring their expertise to the Web using the blogging medium. The initial launch will feature 11 bloggers from across the country and the company says they intend to add more over time.
Here’s one snippet I thought was rather interesting from the relase:
Additionally, the “Store Locator” on Barnes & Noble.com now allows visitors to identify stores with Blogging Booksellers in residence – a unique way for consumers to find their local “celeb” bloggers.
I like the idea of allowing local employees to write about books and other media. My hope is that the blogs aren’t limited to only what B&N sells and will also feature a good deal of local flavor. Perhaps all of the blogging booksellers could come together to review books across multiple areas of the U.S.
If you are an early adopter in the Internet space or a social media junkie then most likely you’ve been playing with FriendFeed. I am not going to debate here whether FriendFeed is good or evil, you can read my earlier commentary for those insights.
Last month Michael Arrington asked "Where’s Delicious 2.0?" In the post he explains that it’s been nine months since they first previewed the next release of the social bookmarking service but it’s still not live. We also learned last month that Delicious founder Joshua Schachter is leaving Yahoo. Will the Delicious 2.0 release ever make it to prime-time?
Had Delicious (and Yahoo) moved faster on the release could they have become what’s hot with FriendFeed today? I get that FriendFeed allows you to share your delicious bookmarks. But what I am talking about here is something much bigger strategically. By "sitting" on the release, the team lost their chance to move the strategy forward.
Delicious has "saving", FriendFeed has "liking". These are basically the same thing except that Delicious saves for the long-term and has tagging while FriendFeed is basically for the short-term. That’s where Delicious stops and FriendFeed picks up. FriendFeed aggregates more than just Web URLs by including many of the popular techie social networking services. FriendFeed also integrates a very simple message board.
Had Yahoo wanted to actually take their Delicious investment and do something with it, how hard would it have been to add the same functionality? If we look back a year, Delicious had a much larger "buzz share" than they do today. When I look at the CN logs, we rarely see any traffic from Delicious and haven’t had a frontpage link in probably nine months. Yet in the last week, I’ve seen way more traffic from FriendFeed. Yahoo’s Delicious service has a "close to mainstream" userbase and sure missed a golden opportunity to move forward – a fail whale if you will.
On the flip-side, should FriendFeed offer an option to categorize and save links and just crush Delicious to bits? Seems like it would be pretty trivial for FF to add this and would allow for both likes and saves options. Likes are to share with your network, saves are for you for the future.
If you look at the topic I’ve discussed here, it’s basically what Fred Wilson discussed when he wrote about stagnation when companies acquire startups. Who will come up next and displace Upcoming and/or Flickr as the techies choice?
Last year my friend Stephanie wrote a very well received description of RSS that my mother could understand. She called it, "How to explain RSS the Oprah way" and it's a very worthwhile read. For example, instead of defining RSS as "really simple syndication" or any other geek definition, she defines it as, "Ready for Some Stories”.
Today another similar explanation comes, this time it's about Social Bookmarking. And it's a video from CommonCraft. It's a well prepared and produced video using paper snippits to illustrate how bookmarking on Del.icio.us works. I have embedded the video below (RSS you have to click through). They sure do use a lot of paper!
Josh from Webware thinks, "This may be viral marketing, but it's very well executed and a joy to watch. I'd hire these guys for my start up video." Digital Inspiration and Download Squad have additional thoughts.
I have marketed myself for 10+ years now as the guy who can translate anything tech into non-tech. It's something that has helped me move up in the ranks of my employers because most times, it's the non-tech talk that gets you ahead. When you want money for a new project or expenditure, being able to explain what it is without going tech can help sway the needed votes in your favor. I have taught these skills to developers over the years and I believe that tech schools and universities need to do more of this. Get the developer ready for the real world where they might have to "sell something in."
This afternoon I attended the Social Bookmarking Strategies session within the Search Engine Strategies 2007 NY conference which was moderated by Alex Bennert and the speakers included: Todd Malicoat, Lee Odden, Neil Patel, and Michael Gray. I was looking forward to hearing Neil speak but for some reason he was only part of the q&a portion. Below are my notes. Honestly, for most of the CN audience, nothing will appear new.
- Lee discusses why web based bookmarks are better than local bookmarks. Goal is to get people to share your content with others via these sites.
- Difference between social news (digg, reddit) and social bookmarks (delicious and furl). News is hot now, Bookmarks are for the future.
- Shows Delicious as the most popular social bookmarking site. Then shows how to actually bookmark a link with Delicious! WOO!
- Shows Furl and explains that they cache content.
- Shows Blinklist and their excellent widget for syndication.
- Shows Magnolia and says they are basically low to medium for marketing. Notes that you can group things together.
- Shows Google Bookmarks and explains that personalized results will be affected. Also offers an IE toolbar for the bookmarks.
- Use this 301url.com/social-bookmarks to find hundreds of social bookmarks.
- Tips: become a user, pick a tool, place buttons prominently, don't overkill, match bookmark service to audience, track referrals.
Todd Malicoat aka StuntDubl
- His presentation is dated 2006 – I sure hope this is not a rehash of a year ago!
- Why use Del.icio.us? Bookmark aggregation, Repeat traffic and loyal visitors, Real traffic and Great users
- He explains how you should spam your friends and buddy lists to help you hit the home page of delicious.
- Why do research for social media?
– find out whats working and not working
– discover trends
– discover key players
– watch the competition
– find out what people are saying about you
- He loves RSS
- Explains how to use the Digg feature for research – I disagree with him completely
- Shows Netscape and how it has no search feature
- Shows StumbleUpon and its research capability with its stars function
- Shows Delicious and the history feature for a post
- Discusses how to track your company and the competition using the news services and social media sites