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Blogging’s Netscape IPO

I’ve been following the reaction of Google’s acquisition of Pyra, and I’m seeing a sense of pride in what webloggers are saying about it (follow along @ Daypop, Technorati, Blogdex, and on MetaFilter). People have been and still are attached to Blogger. They’ve liked seeing it succeed and helped out when it was down.

Maybe it’s the whole selfless do-it-yourself spirit (although not the DIY spirit that Ev talks about when he says the acquisition provides “resources to build on the vision I’ve been working on for years”) that was there in the early days of weblogging with Pyra releasing this tool for free, making it possible for people express themselves to an audience and connect with each other. People invested in Blogger and in weblogs, and they’re proud to see it find a good home with a good company.

It reminds me of the Netscape IPO. At the time, Netscape had a ton of good will from its users: it was good, it was free, people loved using it because it gave them access a global network of people and information, the guys responsible for it were just college students…people you might know rather than some faceless corporation. When Netscape went IPO and became worth $2.6 billion, Netscape users were very proud, like we had all contributed to the company somehow and it had finally paid off.