GoogleJot… What?


Google has bought JotSpot, the wiki company in constant transition, for an undisclosed amount of money. We had heard about this deal a few days ago, but Google PR didn’t call back, JotSpot PR agency got snippy with us when we asked; Joe Kraus, JotSpot CEO didn’t bother to return emails. Since we could not get three sources to confirm, we let it go. What is this deal all about? Let me ponder on that – over some strong coffee, from Blue Bottle of course. You can leave your comments, or simply take the poll.



I think this has a lot more to do with the concept of Jot’s DIY-application platform and the work they’ve done in developing this idea. The existing apps, userbase, infrastructure, etc. are not that exciting, the big innovation is the removal of complexity in the creation process.

I go into further depth here:


What in the hell is Google thinking? As an enterprise customer, I would be “spooked” by placing my sensitive and confidential information on Google owned and operated servers, and I certainly don’t trust their privacy policy. I remember they had a big bad leak in April when some knucklehead at Google inadertantly publicly posted a ppt preso for analysts that included notes indicating that Google internally had doubts about their own numbers compared with Wall Street expectations.

Man, I would stick with Confluence, SocialText or eTouch SamePage.

Enterprise customers to GoogaJot: “So long Jot. Enjoy your new customers, like Joe’s trophy shop and the McDaniel family photo wiki.”

Dave McClure

yeah, i’m guessing $35M plus or minus 10, but i’m in the same range as you. at that price, not a bad deal for Google and a pretty good team of engineers to bring into the fold.

not necessarily a blockbuster, but still a nice move for Google to expand their Google Docs / Web Office strategy, and a modest-to-good exit for Joe and his investors.

congrats Joe, and hope the number was higher than i think ;)

  • dmc

back to the PR bit, i bet a year ago the snooty pr person was begging you and every other blogger, journalist to write about their company.


Genius move. Jot is an awesome application, basically a wiki based hosted company intranet with all the basic tools for e-mail, calendar and file sharing, issue tracking, and other staples.

You can develop custom applications on it also! This really rounds out Google’s “office 2.0” feature set.

Om Malik

Okay, not posting about the rumor – well there is a rule that you need to have more that one source, and you gotta go with that. call it conditioning.

how much did they get. my guess would be between $25 and $35 million. Perhaps in the same range as Writely, which I am told got about $25 million plus (though no confirmation at all.)



One thing I like about your blog is that you are not afraid to speculate: so how much do you think Google paid for JotSpot?


makes sense to me.

they are putting together a platform to deliver services to enterprises and consumers and jotspot is another piece of the puzzle.

imho, their next target is likely purely for the Apex platform.

one thing they are missing is the ‘last mile’ connectivity to the users but when that is in place they will own every piece of the network (ie, they will be able to keep your traffic on their network end to end).

when is the justice dept going to at least open their eyes to this? goog is far bigger threat than AT&T ever was prior to their being broken into the RBOCs.

MIchael Kamleitner

@Om: as someone previously mentioned, you could have published earlier with a big red “rumour”-label, why not… but anyway.

as for the deal I’m not so sure it makes a whole lot of sense to me… some key-compentents of JotSpot (word-processor, spreadsheets) are easily outperformed by Google’s counterparts, so I bet they won’t survive very long. many of Jotspot’s business-features are pretty low-key (I’m talking about project-management, recruiting manager, knowledge base…), I bet they could’ve been cloned by Google’s Dev within days. so what remains is the core-wiki functionalitiy of Jotspot, and I wonder if that alone is worth the hassle of integrating foreign codebase…

as for the userbase… I guess it’s rather small (TechCrunch reports 2000 paying customes, and as far as I remember the free product is that much restricted, that I doubt there are many active users).

maybe I’m missing something, but I don’t really see much sense in this…

but I’m probably

keith bohanna

Just in from Jotspot – looks like a “free for all”!

Will paying customers still be charged?

We will no longer be billing customers for the use of the service. Although you will still have use of the product at your current pricing plan, we won’t charge you anymore when your current billing cycle expires.


It makes sense, Om. Google is always in need of more user-generated content, widely viewed, to sell ads next to.

Jot started out as a wiki-centric app dev platform (not a great one, btw — compsci too complex design), but has of late been swinging more towards being a vendor of office-lite and consumer web apps. The latter — Jot plans to launch 30+ new apps in 2007 — is likely the main reason for the deal. Plus the fact that Joe and goog mgmt are all Stanford alums, and Joe started in search.


Makes sense to me:

  1. jotspot has “enterprise” software (i.e. self-hosted) that would fit nicely into google appliance, creating wiki+internal search inside LANs

  2. prevents microsoft or yahoo from getting their hands on this good product team, and forces them to go further down the food chain to get next-best-in-class.

  3. creates a little bit of healthy internal competition and/or synergy with writely team

So, what about dabbleDB? next?


I don’t get why you are asking the question. It certainly makes more sense than buying YouTube.


Just go live with it next time, label it as a rumor, and put them on the spot.

Your biggest competitive advantage is the ability and reputation for breaking news/ideas before the others. If I can read it on 50 other blogs, don’t even post it.

Om Malik

PR’s job is to deal with the media. and of course if you don’t ask them, then the ceo’s get all pissy and blame the reporters.


Hey Om, think the CEO and PR folks might have just been a bit too — oh I don’t know — busy with other stuff to get back to your precious emails? Haha, effin’ bloggers.

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