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Google Buys Pyra, But Why?

Dan Gillmor of the San Jose Mercury News broke the story that Google has bought Pyra Labs, better known for its Blogger weblog software and services. Our big question about the acquisition, not answered to our satisfaction in Gillmor's otherwise excellent article, is why?

The most obvious reason we can find for Google to buy Pyra is to get access to the referrer logs of thousands of actively updated weblogs. This would give Google some insight into news that is resonating at the grassroots level. Often such news is not yet hitting the major publications that it indexes with Google News.

Is that the reason they did the deal? Who knows? But, the other factor to consider is price. They may have been able to do this deal very cheaply, given the valuation that free services like Blogger have these days.

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