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LiveJournal to be Bought Out By SixApart
photogeek
crschmidt
This is a cross post from my blog: however, it applies as much here as it does there.

If there's one thing that I had hoped to never hear, it was that LiveJournal was being bought by someone. However, it seems that today is a day for hearing exactly that: Six Apart Will Be Buying LiveJournal. A thought that hits me hard, given how much time and effort I've put into that site, both in my personal journal and in work in the backend.

Obviously, this is an early announcement: there's no indication of what exactly is happening, or how solid this deal is. As a long time (2.5 year) LiveJournal user, this is something that I have absolutely no interest in.

I was a beta tester for the Typepad service when it first came out - and it was an interesting change from LiveJournal. However, in all my time as an LJ user, I always enjoyed the fact that it was a "personal" project. Something that I could participate in, something that my friends could participate in. Something that let me be a part of it. Something that I fear will change when LJ becomes "corporate". One need look no farther than the Movable Type licensing mess to see things that Six Apart has changed for the worse.

I'll wait until I see further information on what's actually going on before I blow off too much steam: after all, this is a preliminary announcement from someone who doesn't appear to be tied to Six Apart. However, as a user of the site, I'm frustarated that I didn't hear more information through any of the available channels about this beforehand, if it really is happening. I definitely fear that I'm going to see LiveJournal take a turn away from its current status and move towards the worse, should a buy out ever happen.

I just hope that this isn't true. However, I doubt that's the case.

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O_O

That is certainly...scary. *sighs*

Even with the supposedly permanent account, if this is true it's clearly time to get working on that web log I said I'd start and move on.

I wonder if this is the beginning of the end? Unless LJ was in a slow death spiral of its own due to finances/resources i nwhich case there would be nothing to lose by a change, a takeover usually means someone wants to make money which means that changes are likely, and changes for the benefit of the owner rather than the user.

D

Wow, I thought you'd have been on here longer than I have, but it looks like I have you beat by about two years: http://www.livejournal.com/users/rizen/2001/06/03/

Beyond that, I guess it's time to ensure I synch my offline copy more often. I'd hate to lose four and a half years of journal.

That's actually three and a half years ;-)

(Given that Brad seems to ignore the questiongs regarding this, I'm a bit tempted to believe it :/. And it's far too early for April fools day)

Oops. Sleep dep does that to a person, heh.

Yes, I too read it and immediatly I turned to LJ to see if anyone in the community was aware, and what was going on. When I started my blog 4 years ago I sent a mail to the boss asking if he intended eventually to sell lj. Because if that was the case I would not have placed too much effort in my journal. It was the beginning, and he had the time to answer personal questions. Now it would be different. He assured me that he would not sell it, and that his ideal was google, who started as a group of students, and grew. On the other side LJ have changed very much in the last years. Before it was possible to suggest something to Brad personally (as I did) or to work directly in improving the site (like Mart use to do). Now all this is so difficult that I have been de facto turned away from contributing here, and Mart at the time was protesting that it was harder and harder for him to contribute (this might have been solved by now).

So the end point is that LJ has moved from a small site to a big business. And maybe is time to move on also for Brad.

I just hope that this isn't true. However, I doubt that's the case.

same same

It really reads like a hoax. So I'll, conversely, be surprised if it isn't one.

There's a few things that lead me to believe otherwise:

1. My speculation 6 months ago that Brad would be getting out of the game soon to work on his own things.
2. Some rumblings from others more in the know than I am that this was the case.
3. The timing of the sites posting it: pretty much all at the same time, as if it was a predetermined time
4. LiveJournal administration telling support volunteers they shouldn't talk about it in the support IRC channel
5. At least two employees definitely being aware of it (unless they're blind) and not mentioning a thing in their post-announcement journal entries. (Typically, they'd scoff.)

4 and 5 are what gets to me the most.

If it gets bad couldn't you just move to a site that uses the open source LJ code and has no interest in selling out?

Sure, it might not be as full featured, but if it's a bad as you think it's going to be, won't people want to move.

The tech, I can get anywhere. (I don't use LJ for the technology anyway: I use my weblog, which runs wordpress, for that.) The community I can't get anywhere else, and you can't get people to move in the numbers you need.

Exactly.

It's really time to start my web log now. *sigh*

If LJ turns into a total pay system, or filled with new crap nobody wants, made less usable, something like that.. people WILL move if you show them something that's decent.

LJ currently has three really good things going for it that most other blogging sites don't.

1. Friends lists
2. Communities
3. SANE commenting

If another site comes up with those, makes it free with bonus stuff for paying, and the interface doesn't suck, people WILL move if it gets bad on LJ.

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