Mark Bult Design: San Francisco, CA, Established 1988

Web design and development for small and large business, e-commerce, b2b, b2c, SAAS, and community websites. User experience design and usability testing.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

AOL snaps up Weblogs Inc. — Are blog networks the new black?

With a bevvy of successful sites such as the popular Engadget and all their Unofficial XYZ Blogs (Apple, Photoshop, Microsoft, Google, fill in the blank), we should have realized that Weblogs Inc. was a prime target to be picked off. Let's hope AOL doesn't shoot itself in the foot with this purchase.

Weblogs Inc. has built an impressive network of vertical market (a.k.a. niche market, a.k.a. affinity market) blog properties in practically every category you can imagine. While many of the blogs are still in their infancy, apparently that network was impressive enough to earn a reported "about $25 million" pricetag (according to Reuters).

But Weblogs Inc. is not the only blog network. Gawker Media has the popular Gizmodo, Gawker, and Wonkette properties, among others.

And there are a few smaller (but growing) players out there too, such as Business Logs' 9Rules Network.

In a related note, VeriSign recently bought for $2.3 million, and for an estimated $30 million. is a tool which allows bloggers to ping a server to alert people — via pingbacks, newsreaders, etc. — to know that their blog has been updated. processes close to 2 million pings a day. VeriSign's Michael Graves outlined the reasons for the purchase and future plans on the VeriSign blog (apropos, don'tcha think?).

Filed under: tech, business, blogging, blog networks


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