About the NYT selling About.com (Flashback)

When you’ve blogged as long as I have and you see that a company like the New York Times is about to sell a property like About.com at an underwater price, you can point back to what you were thinking when the New York Times was buying it at what you thought was an inflated price.

By the way, I’ll give “smartest pundit in the room” award on that 2005 transaction to Jeff Jarvis*, who observed what seemed clear to me and others seven years ago:

“I wouldn’t buy About. Not that I could afford it but… If you were starting About.com today, you wouldn’t create a centralized marketplace of cheap content; you wouldn’t hire a bunch of people (even at serf wages) to create the content. Instead, it would make much more sense to start a network of distributed media (yes, blogs): less cost, less risk, greater scale, greater diversity, stronger voice of the people.”

*We all have our good days, and bad, when it comes to punditry.

  • Hi Rex,
    I got a kick out of reading this post and then following the link back to your post from February 2005.
    It would appear that if nothing else was accomplished by the NYTimes’ purchase of About, it did lead to my first connections to you and Rafat.
    And that was worth $410 million.

  • Paul. You are linked to in one of those posts but the link seemed dead. If you have a place I can point, let me know.

  • The link in your earlier post works for me.
    But here it is anyway: http://paulconley.blogspot.com/2005/02/aboutcom-for-sale.html