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Updated: Wired Buys Back HotWired And Webmonkey Too; Relaunches Latter

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imageUpdated below: Wired Digital, part of CondeNast, who has just bought tech news site Artechnica (we reported on it this weekend), has also quietly bought defunct developer site Webmonkey and the original online web magazine HotWired, from its parent Lycos USA (which in turn is owned by Korean company Daum). Webmonkey was closed down by then owner Terra Networks in 2004…under Wired now, it has been relaunched as a wiki. On Webmonkey’s site, an explanation: “Faced with the prospect of going back into the archives to continuously update and rewrite the older articles, we decided to turn Webmonkey into a collaborative project. It was an easy decision.”

As for HotWired, the first online site to ever carry a banner ad, nothing publicly disclosed on future plans yet, and strangely, the domain name redirects to travel site HotWire (chances are previous owner Lycos did a referral deal with HotWire on this).

By the way, Lycos still owns the HotBot, one of the earliest search engines that was launched in May 1996 as part of HotWired.

David Carr describes the re-emergence of Wired and its digital division under CondeNast, including all these acquisitions. It has spent slightly above $50 million on the acquisitions, and will spend around $50 million more on smaller acquisitions, the story says. “Conde Nast has essentially re-geeked Wired…the company will now have a male-skewing audience of about 19 million unique visitors, which will put them in the neighborhood of and the various Dow Jones (NYSE: NWS) Web sites.”

Updated: The companies have announced this officially..on HotWired, “plans are also underway to revive” it. Wondering what it would look like? Maybe Reddit-like where hot stories get bubbled up?