So why did Six Apart buy LJ?


So Six Apart bought LJ? Why? I have had a few days to think about this and the only conclusion I can draw is that they have “media ambitions.” Let me explain: The depth of the content, thanks to the breadth of the Six Apart network, offers opportunities for smart aggregation. Sometime in 2004, Six Apart had inked a deal with Kanoodle, one of the text ad insertion companies. Now by inserting “ads” from Kanoodle in the free portion of the network, or sharing some revenues with content creators (ala Google AdSense) Six Apart can become a vibrant-blog based media outlet. In the end that might be a smart strategy. We all know that soon the free weblogging services are soon going to swamp the paid services. Fred Wilson seems to be thinking along those lines as well. “It’s also a defensive move to protect Six Apart from the free services taking the market….I think you need to have a free service to be viable long term. I think there’s a big advertising opportunity on these free blog sites.  With contextual and behavioral targeting technologies, the traffic that these sites generate can be easily monetized,” Wilson writes.



My first blog was on Blogger when Pyra ran it. When they got borged by Google there were all sorts of promises of no changes that were broken. I shunted my blog over to Movable Type. Spent two years trying to get the stupid templates to behave only to have Six Apart’s ex post facto licensing ruin the blog by forcing my other author to either pony up or scratch off. Disgusted I moved to LiveJournal. Was incredibly happy with it and actually PAID for five years. So the news that Six Apart is now my “landlord” again does NOT go over well. And in both LJ and Mena’s blog we get the same promises that there will be no changes. STOP with the crap, we know the changes will come or you never would have borged LJ in the first place!

jim winstead

i think that blogger and sixapart/livejournal can distinguish themselves from the old geocities-advertising-nightmare by cutting their users into the advertising (adsense-style). for users writing to attract a public audience, they might want to put advertising on their site if they get a cut.

if you’re like many of today’s livejournal users and just writing for friends and family, you’ll probably never want advertising on your site. (and nobody will really want to advertise there.) so i doubt you’ll see it added. after all, google dropped the ads from blogspot sites after acquiring blogger. i think that keeps the serious competitors from doing it.


According to the FAQ at SA’s site, they are not going to insert ads. Also this is against the social contract of livejournal…

“… but our plans do not include removing the free level, plastering the sites with ads, owning user content, etc… We think the LiveJournal community is unique and vibrant.”


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