Web search powerhouse Google has jumped
headfirst into the popular web logging (blogging) phenomena, inking
a deal to acquire Silicon Valley software firm Pyra
Financial terms of the deal, believed to be an
all-cash transaction, were not released.
Google officials could not be reached to comment on
the deal, which includes the Blogger
“push-button” Web publishing platform used by hundreds
of thousands of users to update online journals, or
Blogger boasts just over 1 million registered users
but only about 200,000 users publish active weblogs.
Blogger runs a free service alongside a $35 per year
Blogger Pro option that offers advanced features for
Pyra Labs, formed in January 1999, was launched
with start-up funding from O’Reilly & Associates,
Advance Publications (parent to Condi Nast), Jerry
Michalski, and The Accelerator Group.
Pyra Labs CEO Evan Williams confirmed the deal on
his personal weblog. It comes just a few months after
launch of Google News and signals an aggressive
push by the search firm into content
The Pyra Labs purchase is not the first time Google
has bought into online content and there is widespread
speculation the company soon begin selling targeted
news packages (including niche weblog content) to
large-scale enterprise clients looking to plug feeds
into intranets and internal news services.
In February 2001, Google acquired
Deja.com’s entire Usenet archive (which dates back to
1995) and rolled it into the Google Groups service.