Well, holy crap — more fodder for the “how much are eyeballs worth” debate that Om so thoughtfully started: Mike Arrington of TechCrunch just reported that Yahoo has bought del.icio.us, my favourite “social bookmark” site, and one of the first in a long line of similar sites that include Furl.net (bought last year by LookSmart), StumbleUpon.com, Simpy.com, Shadows.com and so on. What was the price tag? That remains to be seen (rumours put it anywhere from $15-million to $30-million).
There’s a note on the del.icio.us blog, and it says they’re glad to be joining their “fraternal twin” Flickr as part of the Yahoo family. Union Square Ventures, which funded del.icio.us creator Josh Schachter seems pretty excited about it too. Should users be excited? Depends how Yahoo handles the integration with their own My Web 2.0 feature. I know there was some nonsense with passwords that kind of jammed up the Flickr handover, but they were pretty minor.
Not surprisingly, there’s plenty of comment on this one :-) Greg Yardley — who knew about it but didn’t say — has some thoughts here. Joho the Blog says it’s good for tagging, and that’s good for the web. Steve Rubel managed to have an IM chat with Josh Schachter, and posted a screenshot of it. And like Richard MacManus of Read/Write Web and ZDNet, I too hope that Yahoo doesn’t put del.icio.us in some “walled garden” but keeps it free and open. Mark Evans also raises a good point in his post: Was the del.icio.us business model just to get bought? Lots of VC-bloggers have criticized that approach, including Brad Feld of Mobius and David Hornik of Ventureblog.