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Social Networks The Internet Businesses

Facebook Acquires FriendFeed 71

Posted by kdawson
from the friends-indeed dept.
Several readers including carpenter37 let us know that FriendFeed has sold itself to Facebook. Nobody who knows is talking about the terms of the deal. Here is Facebook's announcement, and here is FriendFeed's, which elaborates: "As my mom explained to me, when two companies love each other very much, they form a structured investment vehicle." FriendFeed was founded in 2007 by four ex-Googlers, including Paul Buchheit — the engineer behind Gmail and the originator of Google's "Don't be evil" motto — and Bret Taylor, a former group product manager who launched Google Maps.
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Facebook Acquires FriendFeed

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    FriendFeed is awesome and FaceBook is sucktacular. Let's hope FF doesn't become some crappy FB app.

    • by PeelBoy (34769)

      I disagree. I like facebook. It is a good way for me to keep track of my friends across the world.

      (I haven't used Friend Feed before, so I'll look into that now..)

      I used sites like myspace for a while, but most of them don't do a very good job of letting you interact with people and even worse of a job keeping you updated on what's going on.

      facebook shows you most of the relevant updates you care about right when you login and does a good job of notifying of when there is an update to something you might wa

  • Bah. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by FlyingBishop (1293238) on Monday August 10, 2009 @06:44PM (#29017861)

    I'm getting really tired of my social interactions carrying on in a walled garden outside of my control.

    Really, I'd be satisfied if they'd just start charging money and quit trying to do data mining on my social life.

    Also quit trying to innovate. I want an easily configurable messaging utility that only allows trusted contacts, and some photo upload and publishing ability (with comments) that piggybacks on the trusted communication. Anything above that is just burning CPU cycles. (Honestly, Facebook is as bad as Slashdot, and if they're making the news feed dynamic, it's going to be even worse.)

    • Re:Bah. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by hyades1 (1149581) <hyades1@hotmail.com> on Monday August 10, 2009 @07:20PM (#29018129)

      Really, I'd be satisfied if they'd just start charging money and quit trying to do data mining on my social life.

      If you started paying, do you really believe they wouldn't collect your money AND data mine your social life? Your innocence is refreshing.

      May I suggest that if a man approaches you with a business arrangement involving African personages of royal ancestry, you consider that he may not have your best interests at heart?

      • by Korbeau (913903)

        > May I suggest that if a man approaches you with a business arrangement involving African personages of royal ancestry, you consider that he may not have your best interests at heart?

        Such a man approached me. I was suspicious at first, but he had a legit Facebook profile and we started really connecting on our walls, I feel I can trust him with my other 10'000USD.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Me too. I think that's what WeOurFamily [weourfamily.com] is trying to do. Private, explicit sharing and no data mining [weourfamily.com] are what attract me to this service-in-beta.
      • Still a walled garden. Not a single mention of the protocols they use or how to get data out of their service...

    • by emurphy42 (631808)
      I was pleased once I found how to copy tweets to FB status updates [facebook.com], and deliriously happy once I found how to incorporate FB's chat feature into Pidgin [google.com]. Everyone else can burn their CPU cycles all they want, so long as I don't have to (a) burn mine or (b) try to fight a metric buttload of network effect.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Eil (82413)

      I want an easily configurable messaging utility that only allows trusted contacts, and some photo upload and publishing ability (with comments) that piggybacks on the trusted communication.

      Publish your status (tweets) as RSS, upload your photos to flickr, and post your rants on blogspot. That's what we did in the olden days. (Two years ago.)

      But I've been thinking about ways to break the walled garden and have come to 2 conclusions:

      1) The garden is already here. I don't know if there will be anything bigger

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Bakkster (1529253)

        I want an easily configurable messaging utility that only allows trusted contacts, and some photo upload and publishing ability (with comments) that piggybacks on the trusted communication.

        Publish your status (tweets) as RSS, upload your photos to flickr, and post your rants on blogspot. That's what we did in the olden days. (Two years ago.)

        RSS doesn't have privacy features.

        Basically, in the last two years, the services have come under one roof. It's a walled garden vs an open platform. Sure, a platform would probably be nicer, but who would develop it? Who would agree on the standards? How frequently would it get updated?

        Honestly, it feels like the walled garden approach wins for flexibility and simplicity.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Arrawa (681474)
        Actually, a social network called Hyves [hyves.nl] is just doing that. They have used XMPP, you can import twitter-feeds and import photo's from Flickr via rss. They are working on connecting their services to Facebook, Myspace etc.

        For those who don 't know Hyves, its a 5-your old network with 9 million members, most of which are Dutch. In fact, most Dutch have a Hyves profile.

        They make good money with advertisements, including socalled 'hyvertisement' where members can advertise with their friend's friends for
      • by tlhIngan (30335)

        The garden is already here. I don't know if there will be anything bigger than Twitter or Facebook, or how long they'll last but they will undoubtedly go down in history next to Email and IRC as far as breakthrough Internet communication methods. They're big enough now that they won't be going away soon. You won't tear half the population away from either just by building the same thing and saying, "here, this one's open." They don't care. Social networking is here to stay and Facebook and Twitter let them

      • by lennier (44736)

        "I don't know if there will be anything bigger than Twitter or Facebook, or how long they'll last but they will undoubtedly go down in history next to Email and IRC as far as breakthrough Internet communication methods."

        How about Google Wave [wikipedia.org]?

        • by Eil (82413)

          Google Wave looks interesting, but it's not even released yet so it's impossible to make any predictions at all. There have been many great technologies that were way ahead of their time but overlooked for one mundane reason or another.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by f1vlad (1253784) * Works for Slashdot
      I'd agree with anything but 'quit trying to innovate' ? Why would anyone consider that?
      • by lennier (44736)

        "I'd agree with anything but 'quit trying to innovate' ? Why would anyone consider that?"

        Because "innovate" is usually spelled "break compatibility, make all your contacts and historical data unreadable, experiment wildly at the user's expense with a risky protocol which does all sorts of things wrong, and lock you into one company's system".

        Why would anyone want that?

        Foundational services should NOT "innovate". They should continue being boring, predictable, dependable and secure. Innovate until you get it

    • The problem is, even if you are willing to pay, the social network is totally worthless if no one else thinks the same way. And then, messages from only trusted people? Generally its trivial to ignore someone who you don't know. And sure, some things are kinda unnecessary (like Facebook applications...) but I don't mind the dynamic feed, I don't notice my internet connection slowing anymore with it on, nor does Firefox become unresponsive. As for trusted communication, sure, it might be nice, but in all hon
    • by DavidD_CA (750156)

      I dunno, I kinda like it.

      Facebook's "intelligence" has matched me up with friends from high school, people I used to work with, many of whom I would have never thought to look up. And it's been a lot of fun, and great for business too.

      And the current ability to "Hide" updates from people I don't care to hear about is great.

    • Yeah, I hate it too when my friends tell me that I need to get facebook/twitter or whatever.

      ... wait, they don't do that. Maybe you should just get some new friends who are satisfied when you share your latest pictures on your personal web space. Or sitting on the couch while watching the pictures on your television and having a beer.
      • The problem with that is that Facebook has what is really the most compelling version of the semantic web in existence. Many of the photos are tagged, and from one set of tags on a photo you can follow it around and see a variety of people in your circle of friends. Such functionality is certainly possible outside of Facebook, but even if I were to spend the weeks it would take to implement it, it would only be valuable if a lot of my friends started using it.

    • by Tr3b25 (1250560)
      Try: http://www.ning.com/ [ning.com] You can pay to have the ads removed, but even the free version works nicely.....
  • by XPeter (1429763) *

    How could FriendFeed (A fantastic site with much potential) sell to Facebook?! This is like the Sun-Oracle deal, when a good company sells itself to pure evil.

    What's next, a Microsoft-Google merger (Googlesoft)? I'll let Slashdot choose the evil on that one ;)

  • >originator of Google's "Don't be evil" motto

    Now, Google can do evil as much as it wants.

    • by gmuslera (3436)
      He wasn't in google anymore, so google could have been doing evil all this time. In fact, now that he is somewhat in Facebook, Google can't follow the evil plan of buying Facebook and renaming it to Assbook (that last part would be impossible because they would have back the dont be evil mantra by then).
  • by sexconker (1179573) on Monday August 10, 2009 @06:59PM (#29017981)

    My new app will let you know whenever any of your fiends are freed from prison.

    Keep tabs on your enemies and know when to fear for your life! Get alerts for end-of-sentence release, parole and work-release programs, prison transfers, breakouts, and death.

    FiendFreed can mean the difference between life and death, and you'll never have to consider witness protection again!

  • ...the guy who coined the phrase "Don't Be Evil" for Google, no longer works for Google? What, did he make some surprising discovery? Some conspiracy to do evil? Need the info here pal, I'm STILL USING GMAIL for heaven's sakes
    • by Brian Gordon (987471) on Monday August 10, 2009 @07:14PM (#29018101)

      Uh oh, "don't be evil" leaves just before the Google Wave launch?

      And all of slashdot quivered in fear.

    • by RobVB (1566105)
      The guy who said "don't be evil" sold his company to Facebook... I may be (actually I'm quite sure that I am) biased against Facebook, but I guess the money was just too good. Damn you, money. By the way, how does Facebook pay for this? Last time I checked they weren't making any money, and now they've got enough to buy souls? What's happening to the world?
      • Money? I heard that his terms for the sale were "I get to add anybody I want as a Friend and they cannot refuse the request."
        • by RobVB (1566105)
          Money doesn't necessarily mean a pre-defined amount of dollars, euros, pounds or yen, just some kind of payment. A practically unlimited amound of FB friends is the best kind of currency in this day and age, alas. This guy is going home with a whole lot of cool points, and might even get into the Guiness Book of World Records as "The Most Popular Guy in History", even before Barack Obama, Michael Jackson and Adolf Hitler.
    • When did he leave Google?

      In 2004 and 2005, Google sponsored the Web Spam Summmit, on how to stop web spam. In 2006 and later, Google sponsored the Search Engine Strategies conference, on how to create web spam. So 2006 is when Google turned to the dark side.

  • full circle (Score:5, Interesting)

    by hitchhacker (122525) on Monday August 10, 2009 @07:12PM (#29018079) Homepage
    How many social networking sites are we gonna go through before we settle on an open platform? Anybody remember Friendster? Myspace, Orkut, Facebook, Google Reader. Oh, I found a really long list of them [wikipedia.org].

    I honestly can't believe that Facebook will be worth much considering how many other sites we've already gone through. I'm usually wrong though, so who knows.

    -metric
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Do you remember when search engines were also a dime a dozen? I remember about 9 or 10 years ago, people coming into the office and grabbing all their stuff, because they were moving to whatever the search engine flavor of the week was.

      So the answer seems to be, "There's room for one or two." Just gotta give them time to whittle each other down.
    • Well there is RSS but its not prescriptive enough for most people.
    • by Vahokif (1292866)
      A lot of those are country-specific and very much alive. Also, Google Reader is an RSS aggregator, not a social networking site.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by hitchhacker (122525)

        Google Reader is an RSS aggregator, not a social networking site.

        The group of people I currently see sharing content on Google Reader suggests otherwise. It has been moving towards the social aspect for awhile now. eg. Sharing content, commenting, 'liking'. It feels like a precursor to what Google Wave is trying to be.

        -metric

    • Re:full circle (Score:4, Informative)

      by werdnapk (706357) on Monday August 10, 2009 @09:48PM (#29019037)
      An open platform such as http://code.google.com/apis/opensocial/ [google.com] ?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by prockcore (543967)

      The fact that you list Google Reader as a "social networking site" tells me you are unclear on either google reader, or social networking.

      Google Reader may have some social networking ability, but it's still primarily an rss aggregator.

      • It has been a long time since it was just an RSS reader. From 2007: Google Reader Begins Sharing Private Data [slashdot.org]. The newer features added in the past few months have pushed it more to the social side, IMO. Of course it all depends on how you use it, and who you are sharing data with.. and how they use it.

        -metric
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Korbeau (913903)

      > How many social networking sites are we gonna go through before we settle on an open platform?

      I'd say 60 or so. By that time we'll totally have lost our interests in so called "friends" and just go along our cyborg life.

  • FriendFeed (Score:2, Funny)

    by alienzed (732782)
    make a sandwhich, then make a friend, then give said sandwhich to said friend, et voila!
  • Terms of the deal (Score:5, Informative)

    by everynerd (1252610) on Monday August 10, 2009 @08:32PM (#29018567)
    Sure, we know the terms of the deal. Roughly $50 Million. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124993350820120361.html [wsj.com]
  • by Anonymous Coward

    A business plan. Yes, one that makes money.

    Seems the only ones making money off these social sites seems to be hardware vendors and bandwidth sellers.

  • by cbraescu1 (180267)

    Shame on them, for selling out. They should have become Open Source ;-)

    Now seriously, is there any chance of writing the summary in a way that's not leftier than Stallman?

  • We found his Earth-shattering Kaboom!

  • Frankly most web users probably mistaken FriendsFeed for FriendFinder, therefore the relative small user base. And let's face it - FF just has too many bad connotations.
  • So when will the newly designed FriendFace [friendface.org] be bought by FaceFriend? Will I then be able to add Moss [friendface.org] or Roy [friendface.org] to my FaceFriend friend list?
    • by imnlfn (140832)

      Thank you. The only reason I clicked on this story was to look for references to FriendFace.

  • Ning [ning.com] buying Skyrock [skyrock.com]? :)

An inclined plane is a slope up. -- Willard Espy, "An Almanac of Words at Play"

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