And no, it’s not the royal wedding. As much as I hope Kate and William have a long and happy life together, they’re not friends or acquintances, and as part of a consititutional monarchy, they’re unlikely to have any effect on my life. I’m celebrating the marriage of Delicious, the incredibly useful and powerful social bookmarking service which was neglected since acquisition by Yahoo, with new owners AVOS, which despite sounding like a major shopping website, is actually the new company from Youtube founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen.
I’ve written in the past about Delicious alternatives, and how I ended up moving from using Delicious as my primary bookmarking tool to using Diigo with Delicious as a backup. But this could change things.
- Hurley and Chen have a lot of experience in social information sharing – that’s essentially what Youtube is. Upload your video data and use some quick and simple social tools to hopefully get a response.
- Delicious may have stagnated but there’s a huge amount of data there, just waiting to be utilised more effectively.
- The AVOS press release regarding the acquisition references making it ‘easier and more fun to save, share and discover‘, plus ‘The YouTube founders plan to work closely with the community over the next few months to develop innovative features to help solve the problem of information overload‘. Two of those issues have been key to Delicious, and the third is something which is become an increasingly timely problem.
And lastly, I have a bit of a hypothesis that this may be a project that Hurley and Chen will look to build longterm rather than setting up for an acquisition in 18 months as happened with Youtube. Firstly, Delicious has been on the block for a while, and social bookmarking tools aren’t exactly hot commodities. Secondly, this isn’t their hope to make enough cash to live on for the rest of their lives – they’ve been there and done that. Much like Kevin Rose and Ev Williams are ‘pivoting’ what they are working on, or Alexis Ohanian, Reddit co-founder, is returning to Reddit as an advisor, I suspect Delicious could be something that Hurley and Chen cared enough about to acquire and set-up as something they hold onto – if not, why spend the money on acquiring an existing community when their names and expertise could probably build up something from scratch to the same level pretty fast with no acquisition cost?
That last paragraph is all optimism and speculation, but one thing I do know is that we’re sure to see some positive changes to Delicious, and it’s now being run by people who really know the power of data, social and sharing.