It’s the end of the road for social bookmarking website del.icio.us. After almost fifteen years, the site has been acquired by rival Pinboard, and will be shuttered on June 15, when it goes into read-only mode. While the site will continue to be viewable, users won’t be able to save any new bookmarks.
Del.icio.us pioneered the social bookmarking paradigm. Its influence can be seen everywhere, from Reddit to Twitter.
Over its long life, it changed hands several times. Firstly, to Yahoo, who spent between $15 million and $30 million on it. After several years of mismanagement, Yahoo sold it to the Chad Hurley and Steve Chen-owned AVOS Systems, who then offloaded it to Science, Inc, who in turn sold it to Delicious Media. The latter was a short-lived alliance between Domainersuite and Science Inc.
And now, it’s at its final destination: Pinboard.
Pinboard’s decision to acquire del.icio.us is an incredibly shrewd one. Firstly, the two sites are inextricably linked. After del.icio.us was acquired by AVOS Systems in 2011, users fled to Pinboard in droves over complaints AVOS was fundamentally changing the makeup of the site.
By purchasing del.icio.us, Pinboard is able to coax the few remaining del.icio.us users to jump ship. Depending on how much Pinboard paid for the site, how many users remain, and how many users Pinboard is able to convert, this could be a financially lucrative move. A Pinboard subscription costs $11 per annum.
We’ve reached out to Pinboard for a statement. If we hear back from them, we’ll update this post.
UPDATE: I just spoke to Pinboard founder Maciej Cegłowski. In a statement, he said “I am the greatest.” Ceglowski also confirmed the purchase price for del.icio.us, which was $35,000.